June 7 - Congress, meeting in Philadelphia, receives Richard
Henry Lee's resolution urging Congress to declare independence.
June 11 - Thomas Jefferson, John Adams, Benjamin Franklin, Roger
Sherman, and Robert R. Livingston appointed to a committee to
draft a declaration of independence. American Army retreats to
Lake Champlain from Canada.
June 12-27 - Jefferson, at the request of the committee, drafts
a declaration, of which only a fragment exists. Jefferson's clean,
or "fair" copy, the "original Rough draught,"
is reviewed by the committee. Both documents are in the manuscript
collections of the Library of Congress.
June 28 - A fair copy of the committee draft of the Declaration
of Independence is read in Congress.
July 1-4 - Congress debates and revises the Declaration of Independence.
July 2 - Congress declares independence as the British fleet
and army arrive at New York.
July 4 - Congress adopts the Declaration of Independence in the
morning of a bright, sunny, but cool Philadelphia day. John Dunlap
prints the Declaration of Independence. These prints are now
called "Dunlap Broadsides." Twenty-four copies are
known to exist, two of which are in the Library of Congress.
One of these was George Washington's personal copy.
July 5 - John Hancock, President of the Continental Congress,
dispatches the first of Dunlap's Broadsides of the Declaration
of Independence to the legislatures of New Jersey and Delaware.
July 6 - Pennsylvania Evening Post of July 6 prints the
first newspaper rendition of the Declaration of Independence.
July 8 - The first public reading of the Declaration is in Philadelphia.
July 9 - General George Washington orders that the Declaration
of Independence be read before the American Army in New York
July 19 - Congress orders the Declaration of Independence engrossed
(officially inscribed) and signed by members.
August 2 - Delegates begin to sign engrossed copy of the Declaration
of Independence. A large British reinforcement arrives at New
York after being repelled at Charlestown, SC.