Declaration of Independence

Who wrote the Declaration of Independence?

As the word suggests, a document was signed on July 4th, 1776, declaring independence from the British colonies and integration of the 13 states to form United States of America. 

It explains in detail why the Congress on July 2 “unanimously” (by the votes of 12 colonies, with New York abstaining) resolved that “these United Colonies are, and of right ought to be Free and Independent States.”

Why is the Declaration of Independence is important? 

This document and event is significant since on this day the Congress formally adopted the Declaration of Independence—in Philadelphia. This day – July 4th is now celebrated as the birth of American independence. 

What does the Declaration of Independence contain?

The declaration of independence contains the basic tenets stating 

  • All humans are born with the “natural rights” including the right to protect their lives, liberty, and property. 
  • The government is a “social contract” between people and their rulers which can be dissolved if the rulers do not promote the people’s welfare. 

Who wrote the Declaration of Independence?

It is widely believed that Thomas Jefferson is the true author of the declaration of independence. The second Continental Congress appointed five people initially to draw up the declaration. Benjamin Franklin, John Adams, Roger Sherman, Robert Livingston, and Thomas Jefferson were a part of the committee.

Once the committee was formed, Jefferson was given the task of writing the draft for the Declaration. He worked on this from June 11 to June 28th. When the draft was ready, he presented it to the Continental Congress. John Adams and Benjamin Franklin made some changes to this document. 

This draft was then presented on July 1, 1776 and more changes were incorporated in it. On 4th of July, the delegates met in the Pennsylvania State House, now known as Independence Hall and approved the Declaration. The President of the Continental Congress John Hancock signed the declaration along with Charles Thompson and this was sent to John Dunlap’s print shop for printing. 

History was created on July 4th when the United States of America was formed. 

The draft prepared by Jefferson was the preamble to the Constitution. This document would go on to strike the deepest chords in the minds and hearts of Americas of all times. 

 “We hold these truths to be self-evident; that all men are created equal; that they are endowed by their Creator with certain inalienable rights; that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness; that to secure these rights, governments are instituted among men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed.”

The Men who signed this historic document!

Representatives/delegates from the 13 colonies signed and agreed to adopt this resolution of independence. Two of these would go on to be president of the United States. The documents signees are:


Samuel Huntington, Roger Sherman, William Williams, Oliver Wolcott


George Read, Caesar Rodney, Thomas McKean


Button Gwinnett, Lyman Hall, George Walton


Charles Carroll, Samuel Chase, Thomas Stone, William Paca


John Adams, Samuel Adams, John Hancock, Robert Treat Paine, Elbridge Gerry

New Hampshire:

Josiah Bartlett, William Whipple, Matthew Thornton

New Jersey:

Abraham Clark, John Hart, Francis Hopkinson, Richard Stockton. John Witherspoon

North Carolina:

William Hooper, John Penn. Joseph Hewes


George Clymer, Benjamin Franklin, Robert Morris, John Morton, Benjamin Rush, George Ross, James Smith, James Wilson, George Taylor

Rhode Island:

Stephen Hopkins, William Ellery

South Carolina:

Edward Rutledge, Arthur Middleton, Thomas Lynch, Jr., Thomas Heyward, Jr.


Richard Henry Lee, Francis Lightfoot Lee, Carter Braxton, Benjamin Harrison, Thomas Jefferson, George Wythe, Thomas Nelson, Jr.

Thomas Jefferson served two terms during which the young nation doubled its territory through the Louisiana Purchase.

The Declaration of Independence is one of the most important documents ever to be written in American history. It was signed by fifty-six different men, all representatives from different states.

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