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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883

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Happy Constitution Day

It's Constitution Day.,  Did you remember to send a card or flowers to your favorite Amendment?

We celebrate the nation's charter because this is the day Constitutional Convention signed the document. This is the 225 anniversary of that vote in 1787. Unfortunately, there's no special gift like diamond or platinum for the 225th. Not one of those good Latin terms, either, like Dodransbicentennial, which is 175 years, or Sestercentennial, which is 250.

While some might argue that the Constitution should be celebrated on the day it became law, that's a bit more complicated because the states ratified it on different days. Would it be when the first state ratified? That'd be Dec. 7, 1787, the day Delaware voted yes.

Or would it be when the ninth state -- which was the tipping point among the 13 states for establishing the Constitution as law of the land? That would be June 21, 1788, when New Hampshire voted yes.

Or would it be when the 13th state ratified? That would be May 29, 1790, when Rhode Island ratified -- which, by the way, was more than a year after the first Congress was seated and George Washington was inaugurated as president -- on a 34-32 vote at that state's convention. (The route the Founding Fathers took to their more perfect union was not exactly straight and smooth.)

In any event, this is Constitution Day. It's also known as Citizenship Day, in honor of people who have come to the United States and become citizens. Find an appropriate way to celebrate.

Spokane trivia quiz: Where is the marker in Spokane to commemorate the bicentennial of the signing of the Constitution?

Answer later today.

Jim Camden
Jim Camden joined The Spokesman-Review in 1981 and retired in 2021. He is currently the political and state government correspondent covering Washington state.

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