In the pre-revolutionary controversies he identified himself with the American Whigs; in 1773 he prepared for Salem a paper entitled State of the Rights of the Colonists; in 1 775 he drafted a memorial protesting against the Boston Port Bill; and in 1776 he was a representative from Salem in the general court of Massachusetts.
In the American Presbyterian church he was a prominent figure; he worked for union with the Congregationalists and with the Dutch Reformed body; and at the synod of 1786 he was one of the committee which reported in favour of the formation of a General Assembly and which drafted "a system of general rules for.
A convention summoned without any authority from the legislature, and elected on the principle of universal manhood suffrage, met at Providence, October 4-November 18, 1841, and drafted a frame of government which came to be known as the People's Constitution.
Delegates to a constitutional convention accordingly drafted a frame of government, which on the lath of January 1864 was submitted to a popular vote and overwhelmingly defeated.
It is significant that Bonaparte proposed this bill (drafted in the Council of State) to the Tribunate and the Corps Legislatif on the very day on which it was first certainly known that France had accepted the new constitution.