Prereading Quiz: The Federalists vs. the Antifederalists

Before you read “The Federalists vs. the Antifederalists,” take this five-question quiz to find out how much you already know.


True or false: The Articles of Confederation was the first U.S. constitution.

The Articles of Confederation was the first U.S. constitution. It gave almost all power to the individual states. The central government was so weak that it couldn’t even enforce laws. The Articles of Confederation was in effect from 1781 to 1789.


Which group supported the new constitution written in 1787?

The Federalists supported the new constitution because it created a strong federal government. The Antifederalists did not support the new constitution because they thought Americans’ freedoms would be better protected by state governments.


Which branch of government does the president lead?

The Constitution splits the government into those three branches. The president leads the executive branch. Federalists supported having a single powerful leader, while some Antifederalists pushed for an executive council of a few people.


Which of these people was the Antifederalist who suggested adding a Bill of Rights to the Constitution during the Constitutional Convention?

George Mason, an Antifederalist from Virginia, suggested adding a Bill of Rights to protect individual freedoms. Alexander Hamilton and James Madison were both Federalists. Federalists felt that a Bill of Rights was unnecessary.


Which state was the first to ratify, or approve, the Constitution

Delaware was the first state to ratify the Constitution, in December 1787. Its official nickname is “The First State” for that reason. In June 1788, New Hampshire became the ninth state to ratify—the last vote needed. The Constitution officially became the law of the land on March 4, 1789.