The unanimous Declaration of the thirteen united States of America

When in the Course of human events it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.

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. — That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, — That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security. — Such has been the patient sufferance of these Colonies; and such is now the necessity which constrains them to alter their former Systems of Government. The history of the present King of Great Britain is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations, all having in direct object the establishment of an absolute Tyranny over these States. To prove this, let Facts be submitted to a candid world.

He has refused his Assent to Laws, the most wholesome and necessary for the public good.

He has forbidden his Governors to pass Laws of immediate and pressing importance, unless suspended in their operation till his Assent should be obtained; and when so suspended, he has utterly neglected to attend to them.

He has refused to pass other Laws for the accommodation of large districts of people, unless those people would relinquish the right of Representation in the Legislature, a right inestimable to them and formidable to tyrants only.

He has called together legislative bodies at places unusual, uncomfortable, and distant from the depository of their Public Records, for the sole purpose of fatiguing them into compliance with his measures.

He has dissolved Representative Houses repeatedly, for opposing with manly firmness his invasions on the rights of the people.

He has refused for a long time, after such dissolutions, to cause others to be elected, whereby the Legislative Powers, incapable of Annihilation, have returned to the People at large for their exercise; the State remaining in the mean time exposed to all the dangers of invasion from without, and convulsions within.

He has endeavoured to prevent the population of these States; for that purpose obstructing the Laws for Naturalization of Foreigners; refusing to pass others to encourage their migrations hither, and raising the conditions of new Appropriations of Lands.

He has obstructed the Administration of Justice by refusing his Assent to Laws for establishing Judiciary Powers.

He has made Judges dependent on his Will alone for the tenure of their offices, and the amount and payment of their salaries.

He has erected a multitude of New Offices, and sent hither swarms of Officers to harass our people and eat out their substance.

He has kept among us, in times of peace, Standing Armies without the Consent of our legislatures.

He has affected to render the Military independent of and superior to the Civil Power.

He has combined with others to subject us to a jurisdiction foreign to our constitution, and unacknowledged by our laws; giving his Assent to their Acts of pretended Legislation:

For quartering large bodies of armed troops among us:

For protecting them, by a mock Trial from punishment for any Murders which they should commit on the Inhabitants of these States:

For cutting off our Trade with all parts of the world:

For imposing Taxes on us without our Consent:

For depriving us in many cases, of the benefit of Trial by Jury:

For transporting us beyond Seas to be tried for pretended offences:

For abolishing the free System of English Laws in a neighbouring Province, establishing therein an Arbitrary government, and enlarging its Boundaries so as to render it at once an example and fit instrument for introducing the same absolute rule into these Colonies

For taking away our Charters, abolishing our most valuable Laws and altering fundamentally the Forms of our Governments:

For suspending our own Legislatures, and declaring themselves invested with power to legislate for us in all cases whatsoever.

He has abdicated Government here, by declaring us out of his Protection and waging War against us.

He has plundered our seas, ravaged our coasts, burnt our towns, and destroyed the lives of our people.

He is at this time transporting large Armies of foreign Mercenaries to compleat the works of death, desolation, and tyranny, already begun with circumstances of Cruelty & Perfidy scarcely paralleled in the most barbarous ages, and totally unworthy the Head of a civilized nation.

He has constrained our fellow Citizens taken Captive on the high Seas to bear Arms against their Country, to become the executioners of their friends and Brethren, or to fall themselves by their Hands.

He has excited domestic insurrections amongst us, and has endeavoured to bring on the inhabitants of our frontiers, the merciless Indian Savages whose known rule of warfare, is an undistinguished destruction of all ages, sexes and conditions.

In every stage of these Oppressions We have Petitioned for Redress in the most humble terms: Our repeated Petitions have been answered only by repeated injury. A Prince, whose character is thus marked by every act which may define a Tyrant, is unfit to be the ruler of a free people.

Nor have We been wanting in attentions to our British brethren. We have warned them from time to time of attempts by their legislature to extend an unwarrantable jurisdiction over us. We have reminded them of the circumstances of our emigration and settlement here. We have appealed to their native justice and magnanimity, and we have conjured them by the ties of our common kindred to disavow these usurpations, which would inevitably interrupt our connections and correspondence. They too have been deaf to the voice of justice and of consanguinity. We must, therefore, acquiesce in the necessity, which denounces our Separation, and hold them, as we hold the rest of mankind, Enemies in War, in Peace Friends.

We, therefore, the Representatives of the united States of America, in General Congress, Assembled, appealing to the Supreme Judge of the world for the rectitude of our intentions, do, in the Name, and by Authority of the good People of these Colonies, solemnly publish and declare, 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 that as Free and Independent States, they have full Power to levy War, conclude Peace, contract Alliances, establish Commerce, and to do all other Acts and Things which Independent States may of right do. — And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of Divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes, and our sacred Honor.

New Hampshire:
Josiah Bartlett, William Whipple, Matthew Thornton

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

Rhode Island:
Stephen Hopkins, William Ellery

Connecticut:
Roger Sherman, Samuel Huntington, William Williams, Oliver Wolcott

New York:
William Floyd, Philip Livingston, Francis Lewis, Lewis Morris

New Jersey:
Richard Stockton, John Witherspoon, Francis Hopkinson, John Hart, Abraham Clark

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

Delaware:
Caesar Rodney, George Read, Thomas McKean

Maryland:
Samuel Chase, William Paca, Thomas Stone, Charles Carroll of Carrollton

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

North Carolina:
William Hooper, Joseph Hewes, John Penn

South Carolina:
Edward Rutledge, Thomas Heyward, Jr., Thomas Lynch, Jr., Arthur Middleton

Georgia:
Button Gwinnett, Lyman Hall, George Walton

This entry was posted in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

38 Responses to The unanimous Declaration of the thirteen united States of America

  1. Akhenaten II

    The most important & profound document in at least the past 500 years.

  2. Sinclair Davidson

    Sounds like a list complaints against Canberra.

  3. john constantine

    Sounds like a list of the achievements of their andrews yarragrad government.

    Once you go Nazgul you never go back, Comrades.

    [In 2017, the writers of this Declaration would be tracked down and jailed in victoria for Domestic Terrorism and Hate Speech.]

  4. Herodotus

    Best wishes to our American friends as they go through another revolution.

  5. I am Spartacus

    That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, — That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness

  6. Baldrick

    Imagine trying to legislate a Declaration of Independence today, in any civilised country.
    No, neither can I.

  7. bobby b

    Too wordy. It’ll never catch on.

  8. Driftforge

    Curt Doolittle did an update which makes for interesting comparison. Reads a bit like a expanded translation, with a few corrections to the original thrown in.

    When in the course of human events it becomes preferable for one people to dissolve the political institutions, treaties, laws, agreements, capital, and territorial commons which have united them, and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God entitle them, a decent respect for the opinions of all mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.

    We hold these truths to be self-evident: that all men are created unequal in ability, potential, and circumstance; that to prosper despite our inequality we must voluntarily cooperate on shared means, even if on competing ends; and to preserve our cooperation our disputes must be decided by the equal application of the law; and as such we must establish equal rights under the law; and that among these rights is Natural Law of Reciprocity: the right to Life, Body, Mind, Action and the Pursuit and Accumulation of interests in Property, for Self, Family, Clan, Tribe, Kin and Nation, through productive, truthful, fully informed, warrantied, voluntary, exchange, free of the imposition of costs by externality, against the demonstrated interests in property of others.

    That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, and limited by the the Natural Law of Reciprocity — That whenever any Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right and Obligation of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to produce and preserve those those rights and achieve those ends.

    Prudence dictates that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience has shown that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed.

    But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to deprive them of their rights, it is their right, it is their duty, and it is the demand of Nature and Nature’s God, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their security, rights, and prosperity.

    Such has been the patient sufferance of our Families, Clans, Tribes, and Nations; and such is now the necessity which constrains them to alter their former Systems of Government.

    The history of the present Federal Government, all its Branches and all its Bureaucracies, is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations, all having in direct object the circumvention of Natural Law, the subjugation of the different States and their peoples to an empire by the subversion of the constitution upon which our states were found, and the terms by which we consent to be governed.

  9. Alexi the Conservative Russian

    Note – not a woman amongst them!

  10. incoherent rambler

    God bless the United States of America.

  11. Neil

    For abolishing the free System of English Laws in a neighbouring Province, establishing therein an Arbitrary government, and enlarging its Boundaries so as to render it at once an example and fit instrument for introducing the same absolute rule into these Colonies

    I believe that is talking about Quebec. The Americans did not like what the British govt was doing at the time with Quebec. I think they wanted it exterminated hence the complaint.

  12. Elizabeth (Lizzie) Beare

    The last of the tyrant Kings of Britain.
    In the fourth century St. Jerome saw Britain as ‘a land fertile in tyrants’.
    By which he meant illegitimate rulers, pushing away Rome.
    America, the brave new world, pushing away the old.

  13. Nicholas (Unlicensed Joker) Gray

    All Males are created equal, except niggers and chinks. They should have had that wording, and it would have been absolutely correct! No need for a Civil War.

  14. Motelier

    America will never be destroyed from the outside. If we falter and lose our freedoms, it will be because we destroyed ourselves. Abraham Lincoln

    Read more at: https://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/quotes/a/abrahamlin143183.html

    Prophetic words.

  15. Neil

    The last of the tyrant Kings of Britain.

    At the time the Americans were the freest people on earth. What tyrannical things was King George doing? If anybody was practising tyranny it was the American founding fathers who were slave owners. I think the Americans wanted to leave and it was just plain old rebellion against authority.

  16. Leo G

    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. — That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed

    Governments then, are a kind of credit broker- Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness for the creditworthy*.

    * terms and conditions apply.

  17. Paul Farmer

    Neil………..without going into all the weeds of the history of American colonies between circa 1730 to 1776 , the Brits were particularly harsh to the local people who it must be remembered were free men and property owners………and whilst yes it was repudiation of authority, the crucial element was repudiation of authority on the basis of no representation in the parliament that is exerting a divine right to tax you…….most men will subject themselves to the rule of law but equally most free men are much less inclined to do so when they have no say in those laws.

    When you add in the backdrop that America was settled by free men or men and women who become free after their migration and service of a period of indentured labour that often paid for their migration ………..the mindset here to foreign control is going to be totally different to other British colonies of the time……..much of the literature talks about inalienable and natural rights of men.

    The American experiment if you like has contributed immensely to how we have come to define these natural rights which include things like the right to own property which was key in the American case, conduct commerce and trade freely, not face arbitrary taxation with representation and of course the big two freedoms themself, the right to free speech and religious freedom and having these enshrined in law, both of these were core beliefs of the American revolution………..to say it was simply a rejection of colonial authority is missing just about all the essential elements of what the American revolution stood for.

  18. Y

    Meh, old white men. What did they know?

  19. Dr Fred Lenin

    No Wymmins No Effniks No married gays ,No lesbians ,No transgenderites , and they calls it democracy .p

  20. Nicholas (Unlicensed Joker) Gray

    So George Washington did not sign the Declaration of Independence. I did see a movie where he is commanding the rebels, and using the Declaration to bolster the troops. But I have also read histories where the main objection was in paying any taxes at all- they wanted the British to expel the French, so they could gain, but at no cost to themselves.

  21. I am Spartacus

    Paul Farmer – exceptionally well said. A world without the wisdom of the US founding fathers? Nope.

  22. Neil

    Neil………..without going into all the weeds of the history of American colonies between circa 1730 to 1776 , the Brits were particularly harsh to the local people who it must be remembered were free men and property owners

    Really? The Brits had just conquered Quebec at great cost allowing the colonists to populate North America. And they were the freest people on earth. Russians peasants at the time were serfs and slaves of the Tsar until the 1900’s. How many Americans did King George gas to death?

    I think the Americans behaved like rebellious teenagers and found convenient excuses to do what they had been wanting to do for some time.

  23. Nicholas (Unlicensed Joker) Gray

    And let’s not forget the unintended consequences! The French monarch supported the rebels, but ruined the treasury to appease his pride at Britain being discomforted. So he had to raise taxes by calling Parliament… which eventually led to the French Revolution and Napoleon and the Napoleonic wars. And they rumbled on for years! And the French are STILL trying to get the other nations on Earth to act as though the French Revolution was and is the greatest event in human history!

  24. Neil

    People have an opinion of the American Revolution because it worked. But what if it didn’t? Just say after British authority left a lord of the flies scenario arose. Preaching rebellion against the powers that be is a dangerous concept. Luckily it worked for the USA.

    But i suspect because they had a revolutionary war they had a civil war one hundred years latter

  25. Token

    For imposing Taxes on us without our Consent

    Who gets to define consent?

  26. Neil

    Who gets to define consent?

    I would suspect the British government was doing lots of things without their consent. They were colonies. And i do not believe the colonies wanted representation in Parliament. They found convenient excuses to do what they wanted to do- rebel. These ungrateful people had just had the French threat removed from North America allowing them to colonise the whole lot and then turned on the people who removed this threat

  27. stackja

    Neil
    #2432417, posted on July 5, 2017 at 9:42 am
    Who gets to define consent?

    I would suspect the British government was doing lots of things without their consent. They were colonies. And i do not believe the colonies wanted representation in Parliament. They found convenient excuses to do what they wanted to do- rebel. These ungrateful people had just had the French threat removed from North America allowing them to colonise the whole lot and then turned on the people who removed this threat

    More taxes to pay for more British soldiers.

  28. Neil

    More taxes to pay for more British soldiers.

    I guess it was always possible France would try and get Quebec back.

    The more i read about the Revolution the less i like it. Luckily it worked for the Americans. And it is not as clear cut as Americans are taught. Apparently Britain had 26 colonies not 13. It was the war itself which lead to the current borders. 13 colonies rebelled and 13 stayed, loyal most probably because their economies were too dependent on Britain. The lesson from the Revolution is that if you want loyalty from humans you most probably will not get it.

  29. max

    Americans in 1788 chose to be taxed by their very own national government, which was nearby and powerful, despite the fact that they had fought a revolution against sales taxes on non-British imported goods, imposed by a distant government which had proven itself nearly impotent in collecting direct taxes in the colonies. The voters got what they wanted: national taxation with representation.

    George Washington in 1794 then got to command the largest military force of his career: 13,000 men. He led them into Western Pennsylvania to crush a tax revolt against the Federal whiskey tax.

    You say that you did not hear the story told in this way?

    Let me fill in some gaps.

    https://www.lewrockwell.com/2007/07/gary-north/shorn-on-the-4th-of-july/

  30. max

    Lots of people celebrate July 4. I do not.

    The Declaration of Independence justified armed secession. It was signed by a handful of lawyers on July 4, 1776. Secession was a way of transferring a great deal of power to colonial legislatures, where most of these lawyers were members. It was a way of replacing governors appointed by the King with governors elected by men of the colonies.
    Then the law of unintended consequences once again made itself felt: higher taxes, hyperinflation, price controls, default on state debts,and (in 1788) a new centralized government that dwarfed the power of the British Empire’s distant sovereignty in 1776. Finally, a new firm of democracy arose, a democracy of nine Supreme Court justices. The sovereignty of “we the people” — the most rhetorically powerful and most misleading phrase in American history — morphed into the sovereignty of five justices.

    Surprise, surprise — but not to the Anti-Federalists of 1787, and surely not to the loyalists of 1776, who had their property stolen by the new national government after 1783. A hundred thousand of them were in Canada in 1788, living under a far less centralized government.
    https://www.lewrockwell.com/2015/07/gary-north/the-disastrous-secession-from-great-britain/

  31. Nicholas (Unlicensed Joker) Gray

    I will agree that the rhetoric sounds good, and some great principles were written down. But the French also had some great principles later on, called ‘The Rights of Man’.
    I think that the United States of America became great because of the land you could get there, ignoring the fact that it had belonged to the Amerindians. If Australia came up with some cheap way to turn deserts into farmland (better water delivery system? fertiliser deposits found and sold?), we’d have heaps of people coming here and being taught that Australia is the greatest land on Earth, and our Constitution would then be called the greatest ever!

  32. john constantine

    cough, Ukraine, cough. best broadacre farmland on earth very near.

    China’s fertile patch feeds a billion people.

    Amazon Basin.

    Indias fertile delta. Bangladesh paddy fields.

    The American Midwest had just a bit more going for it than fertility and rainfall.

  33. Neil

    Let me fill in some gaps.

    Yes the saying “taxation without representation” goes back to Magna Carta. It was also the central theme on how Parliament had the English King by the balls and became more and more powerful until it became the govt. Most Americans have no idea where the saying originated or that England had representative govt of some description before they colonised America

    If Australia came up with some cheap way to turn deserts into farmland (better water delivery system? fertiliser deposits found and sold?), we’d have heaps of people coming her

    There is a big difference between North America and South America even though both have productive land

  34. Nicholas (Unlicensed Joker) Gray

    If the thirteen colonies had not expanded, and the US had stayed as it was, would it have drawn so many immigrants? If we’re playing what-if, what if the King had died in 1770, and a new King had taken over. Would George the Fourth have been as intransigent? Would America be part of the British commonwealth now? No fine rhetoric in a DoI, but a superpowerful commonwealth, bestriding the world like a colossus?

  35. Haidee

    A Japanese woman (Hafu) told me that a conquering Japan would have come up with a way to turn our deserts into farmland.

  36. Neil

    If the thirteen colonies had not expanded, and the US had stayed as it was, would it have drawn so many immigrants?

    The permutations are endless. North America could have ended up like South America. A bunch of English speaking countries with one French speaking just as South America is a bunch of Spanish speaking countries with one speaking Portugese.

    The British had planed to start creating new colonies but the Revolution put an end to that

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vandalia_%28colony%29

    Vandalia was the name in the late 1700s of a proposed British colony in North America. The colony would have been located south of the Ohio River, primarily in what are now West Virginia and northeastern Kentucky

Comments are closed.