James Monroe was formally elected to his uncle's seat in the Virginia House of Delegates.Within a short time, Monroe's legislative colleagues arranged for him to sit on the Governor's Council, a position with little power but immense prestige for a newcomer. As a member of the council, one of the areas Monroe took a deep interest in was the development of the West.After a year, Monroe's performance as a councilor was solid enough to land him an even more important position – delegate to the Continental Congress.By 1783, Monroe had already emerged as a significant patriot-leader.It was a role he would assume for the remainder of his life.
Monroe left Virginia to serve in Congress, the center of activity trying to work out the new national government.One issue Monroe jumped on was the plan of government for the west.He designed the trip to understand and plan for that region's future.From his journey, Monroe played an important part in shaping the congressional policy in the westward region.During his time in Congress, Monroe showed a growing interest in the expansion of the U.S. commerce.In one session, he tried to convince Congress of the need to amend the Articles of Confederation, which would allow Congress to regulate and control trade.Monroe ended his congressional term, and even though he had been thefirst to consider revising the Constitution, he was not selected as a Virginia delegate and later opposed the ratification of the new Constitution.
In 1786, after he ended his congressional term, Monroe returned to Virginia to take up practicing law. Judge Jones discouraged him from starting his law in career in Richmond, Virginia, and Jones suggested that he go to a smaller town for greater opportunities and political advancements. Monroe took up residence in Fredericksburg, Virginia.He married his wife, Elizabeth Kortright, from New York on February 1786.By December, Mon…