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Militia: Legal History

From the earliest days of the American Colonies, it was “every ablebodied adult free male‘s” duty pursuant to law to keep and bear arms suitable to perform their Militia service. Arms were purchased in the free-market and kept in the home. Failure to comply with Militia statutory regulations for organization, individual armament, and training would result in a fine. To be excused from performing one’s Militia service required an exemption.

Legal Background Militia

Militia: Legal Background

Militia: Legal Background If you wanted to know what the word “Militia” meant during the colonial period, presumably you could have gone to a small...
What are Militia?

“Militia”: What are They?

“Militia”: What are They? To understand the Constitution with respect to the Militia (and everything else it contains, for that matter), Americans must focus on...
Militia Creation

How are Militia Created?

Militia CreationMilitia in this America were always the products of charters, ordinances, acts, and statutes—and, as such, they were both created and “regulated” by governments in,...
Militia Common Law

Militia: Not the Product of “Common Law”

Militia: Not the Product of “Common Law” Contrary to a belief enjoying some unwarranted currency among naive patriots today, no pre-constitutional Militia ever derived its authority...
Militia social duty

Militia: The Primacy of Social Duty Over Individual Right

Militia: The Primacy of Social Duty Over Individual Right   The principle of a universal legal duty for individual militia service persisted even after the Colonists...
Militia Not Private Associations

Militia: Not Private Associations

Militia: Not in Any Sense Private Associations The original Constitution refers to “the Militia of the several States”, not “the Militia in the several States”. This is because the...
Trained Militia

Trained Bands

Trained BandsThroughout the pre-constitutional period from the mid-1600s to the late 1700s, Rhode Island designated the largest and most active components of her Militia...
Women Militia

Women and the Militia

Women and Militia Service During the pre-constitutional era women were subject to some Militia duties, if only of a financial nature. And if a...
Militia and slavery

Slavery and the Militia

Slavery and the Militia Slaves throughout the American Colonies were almost always disbarred from the possession of firearms, except under close supervision, no doubt on...
Militia slave patrols

“Slave Patrols”

“Slave Patrols” To some, the history of "slave patrols" might suggest that revitalization of “the Militia of the several States” would actually be politically unwise—because...
"well regulated Militia" 2nd Amendment

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