Duhaime's LawGallery - The Law In Pictures


The 1776 Declaration of Independence of the Thirteen American Colonies

  • Object type: Painting
  • Formal Title: Declaration of Independence
  • Creator: John Turnbull
  • Date Created: 1817
  • Origin: unknown
  • Current Location: Rotunda, US Congress, Washington, DC

This famous painting of that seminal event of 1776 when man not only rejected monarchy but also dared to speak of his "unalieanable" rights, was done by Connecticut arrtist John Turnbull (1756-1843).

Turnbull had first-hand experience with the union: he served in the Army under George Washington.

The painting if often referred to simply as the Signing of ...." but in fact, it depicts only the moment when the final draft was presented; not the signing event itself.

Thomas Jefferson is front and center, standing and presenting the document to the chair of the assembly, John Hancock (sitting).

John Adams is also right up front, in the middle, with his right hand on his hip.

All other signatories of the Declaration of Independence of the Thirteen Colonies are depicted in the painting.

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