Title of the document





Title of the documentThe Declaration of Independence (1776)

Date(s) the document was originally produced

June 11, 1776-First appointment to make the draft

June 12-27, 1776-Jefferson makes first draft

July 1-4, 1776-Debate and revision of draft

July 4, 1776-Adoption of the document

Author of this document

Thomas Jefferson

Title (occupation) of the author

Author/creator’s position or title: Served in the Virginia legislature, the continental congress, and governor of Virginia

Type of document

Congregational record

Is it a primary or secondary source?

Primary source.

Who is the audience or intended recipient of the document? Be specific

The document was written for moral and religious people

Why do you think the document was written? Be specific. Write in your own words

1. Tell the king they would like to become independent from British rule.

2. To express to the king how he treated them really bad.

3. To explain why they have decided to separate from British rule

List three things the author said were important. Be specific. Write in your own words.

1. People have many rights that should never be taken away by anyone.

2. Colonists had almost no other options than to separate from Britain because they were being controlled.

3. The king was being unfair to the people, which the people did not tolerate anymore

What evidence in the document helps you know why it was written? Quote from the document.

1) “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.”

2) “not to find out new principles, or new arguments, never before thought of . . . but to place before mankind the common sense of the subject, in terms so plain and firm as to command their assent, and to justify ourselves in the independent stand we are compelled to take.”

3) “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.’’

List three things the document tells you about life in the United States at the time the document was written (if a primary source) or the time described in the document (if a secondary source). Be specific. Write in your own words.

1. Life in the colonies was unfair and people were desperate for freedom.

2. Their human rights were progressively being taken away from the King controlling all the British empire.

Write a question to the author that is left unanswered by the document. Be specific. Write in your own words.

Did you ever consider that in the future there would be more conflicts like the revolution?