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The first governing document of America, passed by the Continental Congress in 1777 but not ratified by the states until 1781. This document put the new country in good stead but had some shortcomings. It was replaced by the Constitution in 1789.
Founding Fathers of the United States (also known as the Framers, Fathers of Our Country, or the Founders) are the political leaders who signed the Declaration of Independence or the United States Constitution, or otherwise participated in the American Revolution as leaders of the Patriots.