Northwest Ordinance Approved by U.S. House of Representatives

Northwest Ordinance Approved by U.S. House of Representatives

Northwest Ordinance
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The Northwest Ordinance is officially approved by the United States House of Representatives. When it's signed by President George Washington in August, it will create the Northwest Territory — the first organized territory of the United States. The Northwest Territory encompasses the region south of the Great Lakes, north and west of the Ohio River, and east of the Mississippi River.

No mere legislation, the Northwest Ordinance is described by the legislators as

"Articles of compact between the original States and the people and states in the said territory, and forever remain unalterable, unless by common consent. . . ."

This measure will be regarded by historians as the most important piece of legislation in early American legislature after the adoption of the Declaration of independence. It helps establish a precedent for the United States assuming sovereignty over lands westward in North America.

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