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1. And, to you, my fair countrywomen, the pride, the delight of this nation-decked with all those native charms and cultivated graces, which can adorn the female character, whose moral influence, mild and unassuming, pervades every department of private and social life, to you, is assigned a most important, a most pleasing task. In the revered characters of wives, of mothers, the earliest guardians and instructers of those who will form the future citizens of this republic,' upon your conduct depends their future usefulness to their country, her glory, or her shame.
2. It is yours to elicit and direct the first dawnings of that reason upon the due regulation of which depend their present, their eternal happiness. Instil into their infant minds the sacred principles of religion, and the great moral lessons it in calcates : next to their duty to their God, instruct them in their duties to their country Show to them, the intimate, the ne cessary connexion between those sacred relations, as their reason and judgment expand ; read to them the Declaration of American Independence ; let its golden truths, its sacred priaciples be deeply impressed upon their minds; direct them to the farewell address of Washington,' and bid them regard its precepts as the injunctions of a dying parent to his children, to be indelibly engraved upon their memories.
3. Let the examples of Franklin and Laurens, of Jefferson and Adams, of Green and Warren, of Kosciusco and La Fayette, and the host of worthies, whose names illumine the pages of our history, be ever held up to them for imitation. Tek them of their patriotic zeal, and firmness in the senate ; of their heroic valour, and undaunted fortitude in the field ; and for a consummation of all that can dignify the hero, the patriot, the statesman, the sage and the Christian-pame to them WASHINGTON,
4. From the glare and brilliancy of his public life, lead them to his retirement-show whither this venerable patriot, volunarily retiring from the ardent gaze and plaudits of an admiring world—having applied his best years to the service of his counry, he devoted the residue of his days to his friends, to his family, und to his God. In his character let them see the rare combinaion of the noblest, the most elevated attributes of the hero ind the magistrate, with the industry, the economy, the exict regularity, and all the social virtues of the obedient, the isefui citizen :-To close the impressive lesson, point them o the glorious consummation of his character, in his pious reignation, and his death.
DECLARATION OF INDEPENDENCE.
The Unanimous Declaration of the Congress of the Thirteen
United States of America, passed July 4, 1776.*
1. When, in the course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with inother, and to assume, among the powers of the earth, the separate and qual station to which the laws of nature and of nature's God entitle them, i decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires tbat they should leclare the causes which impel them to the separation
2. We hold these truths to be self-evident :that all men are created qual, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable ights; that among these are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. Chat to secure these rights, governments are instituted among men, deiving their just powers from the consent of the governed ; that whenver any form of government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the ight of the people to alter or to abolish it, and to institute a new goernment, laying its foundation on such principles, and organizing its
Philadelphia, July 5, 1776. DEAR SIR,
“ Yesterday the greatest question was decided which was ever debated in America, ind greater, perhaps, never was or will be decided among men. A resolution was passed, without one dissenting Colony, that these United States are, and of rigbt ought to be, free ind independent states."
" The day is passed. The 4th of July, 1776, will be a memorable epocha in the history of America. lam apt to believe it will be celebrated by succeeding generations as the creat anniversary festival; it ought to be commemorated as the day of deliverance, by sna emn acts of devotion to Almighty God. It ought to be solemnized with pomp, shows, anes, sports, bonfires, and illuminations, from one end of the continent to the other, from his time forward forever! You will think me transported with enthusiasm, but I am not. I im well aware of the toil, and blood, and treasure, that it will cost to maintain this declara ion, abd support and defend these States; yet, through all the gloom, I can see a ray of aght and glory. I can see that the end is worth more than all the means; and that pose erity will triumpb, although you and I may rue, which I hope we sball.561. Yours, &c.
powers in such fürm, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their sau ty and happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate, that governments lou established should not be changed for light and transient causes ; and a4 cordingly all experience hath shown, that mankind are more disposed 1 suffer, while evils are suflerable, than to right themselves by abolishin the forins to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuse and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same object, evinces a design t 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 futur security. Such has been the patient sufferance of these colonies ; an such is now the necessity which constrains them to alter their former sys tems of government. The history of the present king of Great Britair is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations, all having, in direct os ject, the establishment of an absolute tyranny over these States. T prove this, let facts be submitted to a candid world.
3. He has refused his assent to laws the most wholesome and necessay for the public good.
4. He has forbidden his governors to pass laws of immediate and presing importance, unless suspended in their operation, till his assent shoul 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 & representation in the legislaturema right inestimable to them, and formidable to tyrants only.
5. He has called together legislative bodies at places unusual, uncom. fortable, and distant from the repository of their public records, for the sole purpose of fatiguing them into compliance with his measures.
6. He has dissolved representative houses repeatedly, for opposing, with manly firmness, his invasions on the rights of the people.
7. 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 fror without, and convulsions within.
8. 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 migration hither, and raising the conditions of new appropriations of lands.
9. He has obstructed the administration of justice, by refusing his "aisent to laws for establishing judiciary powers.
10. He has made judges dependent on his will alone, for the tenure thcir offices, and the amount and payment of their salaries.
11. He has erected a multitude of new offices, and sent hither swarm of officers, to harass our people, and eat out their substance.
12. He has kept among us, in times of peace, standing armies, without the consent of our legislatures.
13. He has affected to render the military independent of, and superior to, the civil power.
14. He has combined with others to subject us to a jurisdiction foreiga to our constitution, and unacknowledged by our laws; giving his assent to their acts of pretended legislation :
15. For quartering large bodies of armed troops among us:
16. For protecting them, by a mock trial, from punishment, for any murders which they should commit on the inhabitants of these States :
17. For cutting off our trade with all parts of the world: 18. For imposing taxes on us without our consent : 19. For depriving us, in many cases, of the benefits of trial by jury :
20. For transporting us beyond seas, to be tried for pretended ofences:
21. For abolishing the free system of English laws in a neighbouring >rovince, establishing therein an arbitrary government, and enlarging its soundaries, so as to render it at once an example and fit instrument for inroducing the same absolute rule into these colonies :
22. For taking away our charters, abolishing our most valuable laws, and alterii.g, fundamentally, the forms of our governments :
23. For suspending our own legislatures, and declaring themselves inFested with power to legislate for us in all cases whatsoever.
24. He has abdicated government here, by declaring us out of his prolection, and waging war against us.
25. He lias plundered our seas, ravaged our coasts, burnt our towns, and destroyed the lives of our people.
26. He is at this time transporting large armies of foreign mercenaries, to complete the works of death, desolation, and tyranny, already begun with circumstances of cruelty and perfidy, scarcely paralleled in the most barbarous ages, and totally unworthy the head of a civilized nation.
27. He ha's 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.
28. He has excited domestic insurrections amongst us, and has endeapoured 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.
29. 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.
30. A prince, whose character is tus marked by every act which may define a tyrant, is unfit to be the ruler of a free people.
31. 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 connexions 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
32. 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 the 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 indepenient states; that they are absolved from all allegiance to the Brʻtish Dawn, and that all political connexion hetween Thein anıt the stain 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, Con tract 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 honour.
JOHN HANCOCK, President. New-Hampshire. New-Jersey.
Thomas Stone, Josiah Bartlett, Richard Stockton,
C. Carroll, of Carrollton. William Whipple, John Witherspoon, Virginia. Matthew Thornton. Francis Hopkinson, John Hart,
George Wythe, Massachusetts Bay. Abraham Clark.
Richard Henry Lee,
Thomas Nelson, jr. Robert Treat Paine, Robert Morris,
Francis Lightfoot Lee, Elbridge Gerry. Benjamin Rush,
James Wilson, Roger Sherman, George Ross.
South-Carolina. Samuel Huntington,
Edward Rutledge, William Williams,
Thomas Heyward, jo Oliver Wolcott. Cesar Rodney, Thomas Lynch, jr.
George Read, Arthur Middleton. New-York.
Thomas M'Kean. William Floyd,
Georgia. Philip Livingston,
Samuel Chase, Lyman Hall,
ARTICLES OF CONFEDERATION.
Articles of Confederation and Perpetual Union, passed in Congress, July
8, 1778, between the states of New-Hampshire, Massachusetts Bay, Rhode-Ísland and Providence Plantations, Connecticut, New York, NewJersey, Pennsylvania, Delaware, Maryland, Virginia, North-Carolira, South-Carolina, and Georgia.
ARTICLE 1. 1. The style of this confederacy shall be, “THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA.”
ARTICLE 2. 1. Each state retains its sorereignty, freedom, and independence, and every power, jurisdiction, and right, which is not by this confederation expressly delegated to the United States in Congress assembled.