July 4, 1776

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Gary Noel
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July 4, 1776

Post by Gary Noel » Tue Jul 03, 2018 12:23 am

On July 4 the Continental Congress passed a resolution explaining why it declared independence from Great Britain on July 2 or as Jefferson says at the beginning of the Declaration of Independence “the causes which impel them to the separation.” Jefferson’s essay appears to have been adopted in the morning because a letter addressed to the Lancaster Associators, dated July 4, 1776 and signed by Benjamin Franklin and three other delegates mentions a resolution that was passed “this morning” after Congress adopted the Declaration of Independence. The resolution was the third item passed by Congress after the Declaration had been approved.

Paul H. Smith, while editing Letters of Delegates to Congress, realized the significance of this letter in 1976. It seemed to contradict Jefferson’s assertion that the Declaration had been approved in the evening. Based on the information found in the Journals of the Continental Congress, Smith concluded that Congress probably adopted the Declaration sometime prior to 11:00 a.m. The National Archives has made the Journals of the Continental Congress and Letters of Delegates to Congress with Smith’s commentary available for free online. The Lancaster Associators letter and Smith’s commentary will probably be of interest to anyone who uses a July 4 chart and can be found at: https://memory.loc.gov/cgi-bin/query/r? ... dg004294))

SteveS
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Re: July 4, 1776

Post by SteveS » Tue Jul 03, 2018 3:20 am

Interesting Noel, thanks.

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