On September 17, 1787, the Founding Fathers signed the most influential document in American history: the United States Constitution. This document established the framework of our government and the rights and freedoms that “We the People” enjoy today.
What is Constitution Day?
Constitution Day became a national observance in 2004, when Senator Robert Byrd passed a bill designating September 17 as the day for citizens to commemorate the signing of the U.S. Constitution and learn more about our founding document. Senator Byrd once said, “Our ideals of freedom, set forth and realized in our Constitution, are our greatest export to the world.” He added the Constitution Day clause to his 2004 federal spending bill because he believed that all citizens should know about their rights as outlined in the Constitution. This clause mandates the teaching of the Constitution in schools that receive federal funds, as well as federal agencies.
Join the National Constitution Center for the nation’s best Constitution Day celebration! We are the place to turn to fulfill your education requirements—at the museum and in the classroom!
This Constitution Day, the museum will honor of the 150th ratification of the 13th Amendment, and the beginning of the reconstruction era—a turning point in Constitutional History. On September 17, the National Constitution Center will host activities and discussions—both at the museum, and on our website—that celebrate not only the founding of our nation, but the Constitution’s continuing story of expanding freedom, creating the story of “We the People.”
- View the new episode of our engaging and educational web-based video series, Constitution Hall Pass, and join in the live web chat from September 10-23
- Take part in the free Constitution Day festivities at the Center on September 17
- Download your own personal Pocket Constitution App for your iPhone
- Purchase a Constitution Day Kit, featuring an instructional DVD, pocket Constitutions and other great materials for your classroom
- Explore the National Constitution Center’s Interactive Constitution
Many notable guests have participated in the Constitution Center’s Constitution Day celebration since the museum opened in 2003 including: former Second Lady Lynne Cheney, retired Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O’Connor, activists Elizabeth Eckford and Mary Beth Tinker, and Congressman John Lewis.