This is the final version of the U.S. Constitution. After over three months of closed sessions in Philadelphia, delegates signed the document on September 17, 1787. The Constitution then went to the state ratifying conventions for approval and became the law of the land only after 9 of the 13 states had ratified. The document contained a number of provisions that represented compromises between the North and the South. The framers deliberately did not use the word “slave” or “slavery” in the document.