2. The Bill of Rights

Bill of Rights in the Polonsky Exhibition
Bill of Rights. Photo by Robert Kato.

Another important item featured in the exhibition is one of the original, official copies of the Bill of Rights sent to the 13 colonies by President George Washington for approval. While it is unknown for certainty as to which copy the one on display is, scholars speculate that it is the version that was received in Pennsylvania. Written by James Madison, the Bill of Rights was made to address key issues not addressed in the Constitution including issues such as the right to freedom of speech and to keep and bear arms. 

For those that pay close attention, you’ll be able to notice that there are twelve and not ten amendments listed on the document. The first two would go on to be rejected, leaving us with the current ten amendments we treasure today.