James Madison (1751–1836), undated
James Madison (1751–1836) of Virginia was the principal author of the Virginia Plan, which served as the template for the Constitution. He defended the Constitution in Congress and in the Virginia ratifying convention. In New York, as a congressman, he was one of the authors of The Federalist. He served in the U.S. Congress, 1789–97, where he introduced the Bill of Rights in June 1789. He opposed many of Hamilton's economic proposals and eventually he and Thomas Jefferson founded the opposition Republican Party.