Second Continental Congress and the Declaration of Independence : Second Continental Congress and the Declaration of Independence Background : Background 1st Continental Congress – late 1774 in Philadelphia to ask King George III of England to repeal acts that were affecting the colonies. Declaration of Rights; plan to meet again in late spring of 1775
Battles of Lexington and Concord take place in April 1775 2nd Continental Congress : 2nd Continental Congress Olive Branch Petition – John Dickenson of PA drafted this letter sent to King George saying we are loyal; please remove troops from Boston.
Desire was not to go to war
King George refused the petition and it leads to the Declaration of Independence being written. Second Continental Congress : Second Continental Congress Chooses Washington as military leader
Raises money for troops Declaration of Independence : Declaration of Independence The Declaration of Independence has five parts. They are the Preamble, the Statement of Human Rights, Charges Against Human Rights, Charges Against the King and Parliament, and the Statement of Separation and Signatures. Declaration of Independence : Declaration of Independence The declaration and intent to separate from Great Britain
Grievances against Great Britain, specifically the King, King George as he suspended the people’s right to legislative representation, he swayed the system of justice in his favor, he interfered with free trade and immigration laws.
Appeal for equality, freedom, and to “the opinions of all mankind” Major Themes of the Declaration of Independence : Major Themes of the Declaration of Independence Among these rights:
Pursuit of happiness (some interpret this as “right to property” Self evident truths Human equality Natural rights Purpose of government Measure of Justice Right of revolution Limits to the
right of revolution To secure rights Consent of the governed Whenever any form of government is destructive of the security of natural rights Prudence: Long-established governments shouldn’t be overthrown for “light and transient causes”
Experience: Men are more disposed to suffer while evils are sufferable than to right themselves All men are created equal We hold these truths to be self-evident They are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights Declaration of Independence : Declaration of Independence Officially signed on June 28, 1776, presented to the Continental Congress, revisions and editing occurred on July 2, 1776 and the final version was passed on July 4. (Only two signed the version on the 4th – Charles Thompson and John Hancock)
56 members signed the embossed version Pennsylvanians who signed the Declaration of Independence : Pennsylvanians who signed the Declaration of Independence PA had the largest group of delegates to sign
George Ross Where did it all take place? : Where did it all take place? This is a replica of the Graff house where Jefferson wrote the majority of the 1st draft of the Declaration of Independence (he had rented a room there to stay during). Signing of the Declaration : Signing of the Declaration Independence Hall - Philadelphia