Delegates from several states met to reform commercial regulations of the United States in the Annapolis Convention of 1786. They recommended that another convention be called to shape changes in the federal government; the resulting Constitutional Convention met in Philadelphia in 1787.
Congress passed the Judiciary Act of 1789, which established the federal court system and the position of attorney general. The Supreme Court had already been established by the Constitution but the creation of a lower federal court system had been left to Congress.
The basic document by which the United States is governed, the US Constitution was ratified when the ninth state, New Hampshire, voted in favor of the document on June 21, 1788. Drafted at the Constitutional Convention in Philadelphia in 1787, the Constitution divided governmental powers between the national and state governments in a system known as federalism. It also divided the national government into three independent branches.
The Bill of Rights was ratified. The first ten amendments to the Constitution, the Bill of Rights protects individual liberties from the power of the central government; guarantees freedom of speech, press, religion, petition, and assembly; and specifes the rights of the accused in criminal and civil cases.