Monday, July 12, 2010

The Indian Stream Constitution

On June 11, 1832, settlers in a part of modern day New Hampshire gathered and declared themselves citizens of a new republic.  At the time, the land was the subject of an international boundary dispute between Canada and the United States.  After working the land, inhabitants of the region began to worry that their labors would be for naught as long as legal uncertainty persisted.  So they engaged in self-help by creating their own rule of law mechanisms, selectively resisting the claims of competing jurisdictions, and engaging in diplomacy.  For a brief moment in time, the people of Indian Stream governed themselves and tried to fend off incursions by their neighbors.  Here is the remarkable Constitution of the Republic of Indian Stream.