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Louisiana's Constitutions: Home


Traditionally, a constitution is a blueprint for a form of government. It is an outline that sets forth broad principles to be followed. The U.S. Constitution, ratified in 1788, is a short document that has only been amended 27 times. The first 10 amendments, known as the Bill of Rights, were ratified in 1791. This means that there have only been 17 changes since 1791. 

Louisiana is different. Louisiana has had 10 constitutions since 1812. And there are calls for an 11th from some quarters. Our present and last constitutions have been frequently modified. Louisiana citizens are accustomed to almost constant voting on new additions to the state constitution. Louisiana has changed constitutions for many different political reasons. Sadly, one reason the 1921 constitution was scrapped was because it was considered too big. 

preamble and beginning articles of 1868 Constitution


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Francis Norton
Law Library of Louisiana
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New Orleans, Louisiana 70130


In January of 1861, a convention of delegates met to address current events revolving around secession. The convention adopted a number of ordinances. One ordinance dissolved the union with the United States of America. Other ordinances amended the Constitution of 1852 to prepare for war. Some websites refer to this amended constitution as the "Constitution of 1861" or the "Confederate Constitution."

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