Difference Between Articles of Confederation and Declaration of Independence (With Table)

The Articles of Confederation was a set of agreements made officially in the United States among the 13 original states. The Articles of Confederation was considered to be the first constitution of the United States of America.

It was created by the Second Continental Congress with the aim to structure a perfect new Government and also to serve as a confederation for the whole country.

The Declaration of Independence, on the other hand, is an official document of the United States that was embraced by the Continental Congress. The Declaration of Independence had officially announced the separation of the 13 American British colonies from Great Britain.

The Declaration of Independence was officially signed on August 1776 at the Pennsylvania State House by some of the congressional delegates. It was believed that about 56 had signed the document but only two people had never signed it.

Articles of Confederation vs Declaration of Independence

The difference between the Articles of Confederation and the Declaration of Independence is that the Articles of Confederation was adopted by the Americans soon after the American Revolution whereas the Declaration of Independence was a document that stated the separation of the American colonies from Great Britain.

The only similarities between the two agreement/documents were that both were created by Congress and also by the same people.  

Comparison Table Between Articles of Confederation and Declaration of Independence

Parameters of ComparisonArticles of ConfederationDeclaration of Independence
Executive BranchThere was no executive branch.An executive branch was there in the case of Declaration of Independence.
National Court SystemNoYes
Congress Powers Of LawsThe Congress party had no power to enforce the lawsIn the case of the Declaration of Independence, the Congress had the power to enforce laws.
Setting and Collection of TaxesCongress did not have power to set or collect taxesCongress had gained power to collect taxes.
Raise an ArmyCongress was not allowed to raise an armyCongress was allowed to raise an army.

What are Articles of Confederation?

The Articles of Confederation is nothing but a constitution. It was an agreement made among the 13 original states of the United States of America. The constitution was formulated by the Congress party so that to plan a new Governance structure in the country.

The Articles of Confederation was founded by Congress and here they could not exercise some powers because there were restrictions made in it like Congress did not have the power to enforce the laws that it made and they did not even had the power to collect taxes.

The Articles of Confederation only allowed the state governments to impose taxes. The national government could not impose taxes and this became one of the biggest problems. In order to raise money to pay for the expenses, the national government had to request for monetary benefits from the states.

However, The Articles of Confederation did not last long because it became a massive failure. Soon after the failure, the Constitutional Convention had a meeting in Philadelphia and in the year 1781, the Articles of Confederation was effectively shut down. The Articles of Confederation only lasted for four years from 1777-1781.

What is Declaration of Independence?

The Declaration of Independence, on the other hand, is an official document that was embraced by the Second Continental Congress that separated the 13 American colonies from the Great Britain. It is the document of the United States of America and in it was explained why the US colonies wanted to be free and independent states.

The document Declaration of Independence was signed after a month soon after the approval and was signed in the House of Pennsylvania. The congressional delegates were the ones who had signed the document and eventually there were 56 signs in the document.

Now, the original documents of the Declaration of Independence are currently kept in the National Archives museum hall, Washington DC. It gave certain rights to the national government to exercise some powers like enforcing laws and also collecting taxes.

Most of the things were included in the documents of the Declaration of Independence but it was not applicable to everyone. There were several reasons as to why the Declaration of Independence was designed like for the King, the Colonists, and also for the World.

Main Differences Between Articles of Confederation and Declaration of Independence

  1. There was no executive branch in the case of the Articles of Confederation whereas there was an executive branch in the case of the Declaration of Independence.
  2.  Delegates did not enjoy the power of enforcing the laws in the case of Articles of Confederation whereas in the case of the Declaration of Independence enforcing laws was exercised.
  3. Congress also could not raise an army in the case of Articles of Confederation whereas in the case of Declaration of Independence Congress had the power to raise an army.
  4. In the case of Articles of Confederation Congress could regulate neither the interstate trade nor international trade but in the case of Declaration of Independence Congress had that power.
  5. Articles of Confederation was a document that served as a constitution for the United States of America whereas the Declaration of Independence stated that the American colonies to separate the American British colonies from the Great Britain.
  6. Both the Articles of Confederation and Declaration of Independence was introduced by Congressional delegates.

Conclusion

Everything that was created for the betterment of the people was always not successful. There were always conflicts among people to try and abolish those. Like in the case of the Articles of Confederation though it was not a successful one and was soon stopped after few years of its foundation. The Constitution has been mended several times and currently the document holds 27 amendments and 7 articles.

References

  1. https://books.google.com/books?hl=en&lr=lang_en&id=RHlYssMw6oUC&oi=fnd&pg=PA1&dq=articles+of+confederation+and+declaration+of+independence&ots=JAolz_qwTd&sig=_oKYatZ7kvDJ0BlBeY83W24hVCs
  2. https://www.jstor.org/stable/3491637
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