commonwealth (United States)

Enlarge picture
U.S. Commonwealth States in Red
This article is about U.S. States that designate themselves as "Commonwealths." For usage relating to U.S. insular areas, see Commonwealth (United States insular area). For other uses of the term, see Commonwealth.


Four of the constituent states of the United States officially designate themselves Commonwealths: Kentucky, Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, and Virginia. This designation, which has no constitutional impact, emphasizes that they have a "government based on the common consent of the people" as opposed to one legitimized through their earlier Royal Colony status that was derived from the King of Great Britain. The word commonwealth is of English derivation and refers to the common "wealth" or welfare of the public. In common parlance, people do not make the distinction between state or commonwealth.

Commonwealth of Kentucky

In 1785, residents of Kentucky County began petitioning the Virginia legislature for statehood. They wished the County to be recognized as a "free and independent state, to be known by the name of the Commonwealth of Kentucky." On June 4, 1792, Kentucky County, Kentucky officially became a state. The Constitution was changed as to the style for "all process and mandates" to "Commonwealth of Kentucky" in 1850; prior to that change "State of Kentucky" was used.[1]

Commonwealth of Massachusetts

Massachusetts is officially named "The Commonwealth of Massachusetts" by its constitution. The name "State of Massachusetts Bay" was used in all acts and resolves up to 1780 and the first draft of the constitution. The current name can be traced to the second draft of the state constitution, which was written by John Adams and ratified in 1780.[2]

Commonwealth of Pennsylvania

The Seal of Pennsylvania does not use the term, but legal processes are in the name of the Commonwealth and it is a traditional official designation used in referring to the state. In 1776, Pennsylvania's first state constitution referred to it as both "Commonwealth" and "State," a pattern of usage that was perpetuated in the constitutions of 1790, 1838, 1874, and 1968.[3]

A detailed history describing the origins of Pennsylvania's government, including its designation as a commonwealth from colonial times, is available from the Secretary of the Commonwealth's office.[4]

Commonwealth of Virginia

The name "Commonwealth of Virginia" dates back to its independence from Great Britain. Virginia's first constitution (adopted on June 29, 1776) directed that "Commissions and Grants shall run, In the Name of the Commonwealth of Virginia, and bear taste by the Governor with the Seal of the Commonwealth annexed." The Secretary of the Commonwealth still issues commissions in this manner. Among other references, the constitution furthermore dictated that criminal indictments were to conclude "against the peace and dignity of the Commonwealth."

See also

References

1. ^ [1]
2. ^ [2]
3. ^ [3]
4. ^ [4]
Commonwealth is an organized territory or colony that has established with the Federal Government a more highly developed relationship, which may be embodied in a written mutual agreement.
..... Click the link for more information.
The English noun commonwealth dates originally from the fifteenth century. The original phrase "common wealth" or "the common weal" comes from the old meaning of "wealth" which is "well-being". The term literally meant "common well-being".
..... Click the link for more information.
United States of America

This article is part of the series:
Politics and government of
the United States




Federal government
Constitution
Taxation

President Vice President
Cabinet


Congress
Senate
..... Click the link for more information.
Motto
"In God We Trust"   (since 1956)
"E Pluribus Unum"   ("From Many, One"; Latin, traditional)
Anthem
..... Click the link for more information.
Commonwealth of Kentucky

Flag of Kentucky Seal
Nickname(s): Bluegrass State
Motto(s): United we stand, divided we fall

Official language(s) English[1]

Capital Frankfort

..... Click the link for more information.
Commonwealth of Massachusetts

Flag of Massachusetts Seal
''Nickname(s): Bay State State Bird = Black-capped Chickadee''
''Motto(s): Ense petit placidam sub libertate quietem (Latin: By the sword she seeks peace under liberty)''


..... Click the link for more information.
Commonwealth of Pennsylvania

Flag of Pennsylvania Seal
Nickname(s): Keystone State, Quaker State,
Coal State, Oil State

Motto(s): Virtue, Liberty and Independence

Capital Harrisburg
Largest city
..... Click the link for more information.
Commonwealth of Virginia

Flag of Virginia Seal
Nickname(s): Old Dominion, Mother of Presidents
Motto(s): Sic semper tyrannis

Official language(s) English

Capital Richmond
Largest city
..... Click the link for more information.
British Overseas Territories are fourteen[1] territories which the United Kingdom considers to be under its sovereignty, but not as part of the United Kingdom itself.
..... Click the link for more information.
Kingdom of Great Britain, also known as the United Kingdom of Great Britain, was a state in Western Europe, in existence from 1707 to 1800. It was created by the merger of the Kingdom of Scotland and the Kingdom of England, under the Acts of Union 1707, to create a single
..... Click the link for more information.
8th century - 9th century - 10th century
850s  860s  870s  - 880s -  890s  900s  910s
885 886 887 - 888 - 889 890 891

:
Subjects:     Archaeology - Architecture -
..... Click the link for more information.
Kentucky County was formed in Virginia in 1776. Four years later it was divided into the Fayette, Jefferson, and Lincoln counties of Virginia.

The Commonwealth of Kentucky was formed in its entirety from the Commonwealth of Virginia, being admitted to the Union as the
..... Click the link for more information.
Commonwealth of Virginia

Flag of Virginia Seal
Nickname(s): Old Dominion, Mother of Presidents
Motto(s): Sic semper tyrannis

Official language(s) English

Capital Richmond
Largest city
..... Click the link for more information.
A state is a political association with effective dominion over a geographic area. It usually includes the set of institutions that claim the authority to make the rules that govern the people of the society in that territory, though its status as a state often depends in part on
..... Click the link for more information.
June 4 is the 1st day of the year (2nd in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. There are 0 days remaining.

Events

  • 780 BC - The first historic solar eclipse is recorded in China.

..... Click the link for more information.
17th century - 18th century - 19th century
1760s  1770s  1780s  - 1790s -  1800s  1810s  1820s
1789 1790 1791 - 1792 - 1793 1794 1795

:
Subjects:     Archaeology - Architecture -
..... Click the link for more information.
Kentucky County was formed in Virginia in 1776. Four years later it was divided into the Fayette, Jefferson, and Lincoln counties of Virginia.

The Commonwealth of Kentucky was formed in its entirety from the Commonwealth of Virginia, being admitted to the Union as the
..... Click the link for more information.
The Constitution of Kentucky is the document that governs the Commonwealth of Kentucky, United States. It was first adopted in 1792 and has since been rewritten three times and amended many more. The latter versions were adopted in 1799, 1850 and 1891.
..... Click the link for more information.
18th century - 19th century - 20th century
1820s  1830s  1840s  - 1850s -  1860s  1870s  1880s
1847 1848 1849 - 1850 - 1851 1852 1853

:
Subjects:     Archaeology - Architecture -
..... Click the link for more information.
The Constitution of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts is the fundamental governing document of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. It was written by John Adams, Samuel Adams, and James Bowdoin.
..... Click the link for more information.
John Adams, Jr. (October 30,1735 – July 4, 1826) served as America's first Vice President (1789–1797) and as its second President (1797–1801). He was defeated for re-election in the "Revolution of 1800" by Thomas Jefferson.
..... Click the link for more information.
17th century - 18th century - 19th century
1750s  1760s  1770s  - 1780s -  1790s  1800s  1810s
1777 1778 1779 - 1780 - 1781 1782 1783

:
Subjects:     Archaeology - Architecture -
..... Click the link for more information.
The Pennsylvania State Seal is the state seal for the US state of Pennsylvania.

Description

The seal has a central image of a shield containing a ship under full sail, a plow, and three sheaves of wheat.
..... Click the link for more information.
This page is protected from moves until disputes have been resolved on the .
The reason for its protection is listed on the protection policy page. The page may still be edited but cannot be moved until unprotected.
..... Click the link for more information.
June 29 is the 1st day of the year (2nd in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. There are 0 days remaining.

Events

  • 512 - A solar eclipse is recorded by a monastic chronicler in Ireland.

..... Click the link for more information.
8th century - 9th century - 10th century
850s  860s  870s  - 880s -  890s  900s  910s
885 886 887 - 888 - 889 890 891

:
Subjects:     Archaeology - Architecture -
..... Click the link for more information.
The Secretary of the Commonwealth is a member of the Cabinet of the Governor of Virginia in the United States. The office is currently held by Katherine Hanley.

Duties of the Secretary of the Commonwealth

  1. Serving as the Keeper of the Seal of the Commonwealth

..... Click the link for more information.
Secretary of the Commonwealth is a variant of Secretary of State in three U.S. state governments.

It may refer to:
  • Secretary of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts
  • Secretary of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania
  • Secretary of the Commonwealth of Virginia

..... Click the link for more information.


This article is copied from an article on Wikipedia.org - the free encyclopedia created and edited by online user community. The text was not checked or edited by anyone on our staff. Although the vast majority of the wikipedia encyclopedia articles provide accurate and timely information please do not assume the accuracy of any particular article. This article is distributed under the terms of GNU Free Documentation License.