1: The Declaration of Independence was signed on
July 4, 1776, by the congressional
representatives of the 13 Colonies of Colonial
Fact 2: The document was signed by 56 delegates
to the Continental Congress
Fact 3: The document stated the reasons the 13
American colonies wanted to be free of Great
Fact 4: The Declaration of Independence states
that the authority to govern belongs to the
people, rather than to kings, that all people
are created equal and have rights to life,
liberty and the pursuit of happiness.
Fact 5: The American colonies had been at war
with Great Britain for over a year when the
document was signed.
Fact 6: The document recorded the proclamation
of the Second Continental Congress asserting the
independence of the Colonies from Great Britain.
Fact 7: The American Revolutionary War
(1775–1783), aka the American War of
Independence, began as a war between the Kingdom
of Great Britain and thirteen British colonies
in North America on April 19, 1775 and ended
September 3, 1783. The American Revolutionary
War (1775–1783) lasted 8 years and 137 days.
Fact 8: The reason for the American
Revolutionary War and the Declaration of
Independence was due to the belief that the
Stamp Act of 1765, imposed by Parliament of
Great Britain, was unconstitutional.
American Loyalists rejected the Declaration of
Independence. Loyalists were American colonists
who remained loyal to the Kingdom of Great
Britain and the king during the American
Revolutionary War. Those who supported the
American revolution, and the Declaration of
Independence, were called Patriots.
Fact 10: About 20% of the American population
during the American Revolutionary War were
Fact 11: When the Congress were declared
traitors by royal decree they responded by
issuing the Declaration of Independence.
Fact 12: The Declaration of Independence
Preamble: John Adams wrote the customary
preamble, which stated that King George III had
rejected reconciliation and was hiring foreign
mercenaries to use against the American
Fact 13: The Committee of Five appointed by the
Second Continental Congress drafted what became
known as America's Declaration of Independence.
The members of the Committee of Five were:
Fact 14: On July 4, 1776, the wording of the
Declaration of Independence was approved and
sent to the printer for publication.
Fact 15: The printer, John Dunlap, was asked to
make about 200 copies to be distributed
throughout the colonies. Only 26 Dunlap
Broadsides have survived.
Fact 16: The signers of the Declaration of
Independence did not all sign on the same day.
Fact 17: John Hancock was the first man to sign
the Declaration of Independence on July 4, 1776.
John Hancock was the President of the
Continental Congress at the time of the signing.
Fact 18: The other signatures were added on
various dates, the last being Matthew Thornton,
from New Hampshire, who signed on November 4,
Fact 19: Not one of the men who signed the
Declaration of Independence was born in America.
Fact 20: The first public reading of the signed
Declaration of Independence took place on July
8, 1776, in Philadelphia.
Fact 21: 9 of the men who signed the Declaration
of Independence died before the American
Revolution ended in 1783.
Fact 22: The Declaration of Independence was
signed by Thomas Lynch, Jr. and Edward Rutledge
when they were only 26 years of age.
Fact 23: Benjamin Franklin was 70 years old and
the oldest to sign the Declaration of
Matthew Thornton, from New Hampshire, was the
last man to sign the document on November 4,
Fact 25: Signing the Declaration of Independence
was extremely dangerous - a treasonable act,
punishable by death
Fact 26: Congress initially kept the names of
the men who signed the document secret until
January 1777 to protect them from charges of
Fact 27: Two future presidents signed the
Declaration: John Adams (second President) and
Thomas Jefferson (third President).
Fact 28: The original sheet of parchment
measured 24¼ by 29¾ inches.
Fact 29: George Washington ordered that the
Declaration of Independence be read before the
American army in New York when it was first
Fact 30: The First Public reading of the
Declaration of Independence was in
Philadelphia's Independence Square, on July 8
Fact 31: In 1776, when the Declaration of
Independence was signed, the population of
America is estimated to have been 2.5 million -
the population of America is now about 312
Fact 32: During the Revolutionary War, four
signers were captured by the British (George
Walton, Thomas Heyward, Jr., Arthur Middleton,
and Edward Rutledge). All four were eventually
Fact 33: One US President, Calvin Coolidge, was
born on July 4
Fact 34: The Declaration is divided into three
1. An introduction with a statement of the
2. A list of grievances (Complaints)
3. A final and formal "Declaration of
Fact 35: A one gun salute for each state in the
United States, called a “salute to the union,”
is fired at noon on Independence Day by any
capable military base.
Fact 36: The most famous extract from the
Declaration of Independence is:
We hold these truths to be self-evident, that
all men are created equal, that they are endowed
by their Creator with certain unalienable
Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and
the pursuit of Happiness.
Fact 37: The signers names for Massachusetts
John Hancock (1737 - 1793)
Samuel Adams (1722 - 1803)
John Adams (1735 - 1826)
Robert Treat Paine (1731 - 1814)
Elbridge Gerry (1744 - 1814)
Fact 38: The signers names for Georgia were:
Button Gwinnett (1735 - 1777)
Lyman Hall (1724 - 1790)
George Walton (1741 - 1804)
Fact 39: The signers names for North Carolina
William Hooper (1742 - 1790)
Joseph Hewes (1730 - 1779)
John Penn (1740 - 1788)
Fact 40: The signers names for South Carolina
Edward Rutledge (1749 - 1800)
Thomas Heyward, Jr (1746 - 1809)
Thomas Lynch, Jr. (1749 - 1799)
Arthur Middleton (1742 - 1787)
Fact 41: The signers names for Maryland were:
Samuel Chase (1741 - 1811)
William Paca (1740 - 1799)
Thomas Stone (1743 - 1787)
Charles Carroll (1737 - 1832)
Fact 42: The signers names for Virginia were:
George Wythe (1726 - 1806)
Richard Henry Lee (1732 - 1794)
Thomas Jefferson (1743 - 1826)
Benjamin Harrison (1726 - 1791)
Thomas Nelson, Jr. (1738 - 1789)
Francis Lightfoot Lee (1734 - 1797)
Carter Braxton (1736 - 1797)
Fact 43: The signers names for Pennsylvania
Robert Morris (1734 - 1806)
Benjamin Rush (1746 - 1813)
Benjamin Franklin (1706 - 1790)
John Morton (1724 - 1777)
George Clymer (1739 - 1813)
James Smith (1719 - 1806)
George Taylor (1716 - 1781)
James Wilson (1742 - 1798)
George Ross (1730 - 1779)
Fact 44: The signers names for Delaware were:
Caesar Rodney (1728 - 1784)
George Read (1733 - 1798)
Thomas McKean (1735 - 1817)
Fact 45: The signers names for New Jersey were:
Richard Stockton (1730 - 1781)
John Witherspoon (1723 - 1794)
Francis Hopkinson (1737 - 1791)
John Hart (1711 - 1779)
Abraham Clark (1726 - 1794)
Fact 46: The signers names for New York were:
William Floyd (1734 - 1821)
Philip Livingston (1716 - 1778)
Francis Lewis (1713 - 1802)
Lewis Morris (1726 - 1798)
Fact 47: The signers names for New Hampshire
Josiah Bartlett (1729 - 1795)
William Whipple (1730 - 1785)
Matthew Thornton (1714 - 1803)
Fact 48: The signers names for Rhode Island
Stephen Hopkins (1707 - 1785)
William Ellery (1727 - 1820)
Fact 49: The signers names for Connecticut were:
Roger Sherman (1721 - 1793)
Samuel Huntington (1731 - 1796)
William Williams (1731 - 1811)
Oliver Wolcott (1726 - 1797)
Fact 50The most famous version of the
Declaration of Independence, is displayed at the
National Archives in Washington, D.C.
51: The Declaration has only left the capital
twice. The first time was when the British
attacked Washington during the War of 1812, and
the second time was during World War II from
late 1941 until the fall of 1944 when it was
stored at Fort Knox.
Fact 52: The movie National Treasure starring
Nicholas Cage is based on secret written on the
back of the original document. There isn't a
secret, but there is some writing - a filing
reference. It says "Original Declaration of
Independence dated 4th July 1776".
Fact 53: Robert R. Livingston was a member of
the Committee of Five, but did not sign the
Fact 54: Independence Hall was originally called
the Pennsylvania State House, but was changed
after the signing of the Declaration of
Independence when it became Independence Hall
Fact 55: The Liberty Bell: The Liberty Bell
sounded from the tower of Independence Hall on
July 8, 1776, summoning citizens to gather for
the first public reading by Colonel John Nixon.
Fact 56: Thomas Jefferson and John Adams died on
Independence Day, July 4, 1826, 50 years after
the first Independence Day.
Fact 57: The signers of the Declaration of
Independence had various occupations: 24 were
lawyers, 11 were merchants, 9 were farmers and
Fact 58: According to legend, Betsy Ross sewed
the first American flag in May or June 1776, as
commissioned by the Congressional Committee.
Fact 59: In 1941, Congress declared 4th of July
a federal legal holiday.
Fact 60: The average age of the Signers of the
Declaration was 45
Fact 61: 1 out of 8 signers (7 in total) were
educated at Harvard
Fact 62: The Continental Congress made 86
changes to the draft.
Fact 63: The United States didn't exist until
after the Declaration of Independence was
Fact 64: Every 4th of July the Liberty Bell in
Philadelphia is tapped (not rung) 13 times in
honor of the original thirteen colonies.