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Preamble to the United States Constitution—Historical Document

A historical document is a piece of writing that was written by someone long ago. There are many types of historical documents, including reports, birth and death records, and books of rules. People write historical documents to pass along information or to write down laws. Read the first section of the Constitution, shown below.


Primary Source

We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.

Source: The National Archives.


Background

The Constitution of the United States was written in 1787. It is still used as the plan for our government. This first section of the Constitution is called the Preamble. The Preamble lists the reasons that the Constitution was created. The writers of the Constitution wanted people to be protected and free. They wanted peace at home. By starting with the phrase “We the People,” the Preamble shows that citizens of the United States created this plan to govern themselves.