American independence begins not only with war and protest, but the Declaration of Independence itself. The Declaration serves as both a official severing of ties with Great Britain for the American colonies, and also a list of grievances detailing why this separation is necessary. It is the culmination of what the colonists had protested for, and against, throughout the years leading up to the American Revolution. Written by Thomas Jefferson in 1776, the Declaration is one of the most important and defining documents of our nation’s beginning.
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The Declaration was written, drafted, edited, and composed by several key figures of the Revolution. Among these were John Adams, John Livingston, and Benjamin Franklin. Thomas Jefferson, however, would become the primary drafter.
The Declaration was written for several reasons. It first stated the belief of the colonists in natural rights, liberties, and freedoms. It declared independence from Great Britain, while also listing and explaining grievances against the British Empire.
The Declaration stated that "all men are created equal". It further explained that "they are endowed by their creator certain unalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness". Colonists felt entitled to these freedoms, so they were declaring independence from Great Britain.
WHERE WAS IT WRITTEN?
5 Ws: THE DECLARATION OF INDEPENDENCE
WHEN WAS IT WRITTEN?
When in the Course of human events...
The Declaration was written, finalized, and signed at Independence Hall in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. It was also here that the Continental Congress would set forth plans for their newly independent nation.
The Declaration was composed by several authors over a series of weeks beginning in May of 1776. However, the finalized draft was issued to the Continental Congress and passed voting on July 2nd, 1776. The finalized draft was sent to publication on July 4th, 1776.