ALBANY PLAN OF UNION
ALBANY PLAN OF UNION (IN U. S. HISTORY). The lords of trade, in 1754, directed that commissioners from the several provinces should assemble at Albany, N. Y., to arrange a treaty with the Six Nations. June 19, 1754, commissioners from New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Connecticut, New York, Pennsylvania and Maryland met, and, after concluding their business with the Indians, proceeded to consider a plan of colonial union, proposed by Franklin, one of their number, which was adopted, July 10-11. It comprised the appointment by the crown of a president general for all the colonies, with the veto power; the election by the colonial assemblies of a grand council, who, with the assent of the president general, should make Indian treaties, regulate Indian trade, purchase and dispose of Indian lands, raise and equip armies and navies for colonial defense, and lay taxes to support them. Members of the grand council were to serve three years, and to be chosen in proportion to the amount paid by the colony to the general treasury; but no colony was to have more than seven members, or less than two. Laws were to be valid unless disapproved by the king in council within three years.
—It was agreed that this plan, in order to prevent a possible secession by any colony, should be made binding by act of parliament. The whole plan was disapproved by the crown, on the ground that it gave too much power to the colonies, and by the colonies that it gave too much power to the crown. (See REVOLUTION, UNITED STATES.)
—See 4 Franklin's Life and Writings, 22-68 (containing the plan in full, and the Letters to Shirley); 2 Trumbull's History of Connecticut, 355; 3 Hutchinson's History of Massachusetts, 23; 1 Pitkin's United States, 142; 2 Hildreth's United States, 443.