On this day in 1776, during the Second Continental Congress, Richard Henry Lee introduced a motion to declare American independence. Congress postponed debate on the resolution until July 1, but authorized a committee to draft an official declaration of independence.
Resolved That these united colonies are and of right ought to be free and independent states; that they are absolved from all allegiance to the British crown and that all political connection between them and the state of Great Britain is and ought to be totally dissolved.
And of course longtime readers of these pages understand what must come next (after the jump) …
IMAGES: Detail from the manuscript version of Lee’s resolution
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