Signing the Declaration of Independence

Happy Fourth of July! Three cheers for the red, white and blue. It’s hard with everything going on this year to keep this post from turning into a political commentary. So much of what the men, some of whom are pictured here signing the Declaration of Independence, risked everything for has been eroded away in the name of politics or being compassionate. There is a certain irony that the very generousness that defines us may come to become our downfall.

OK, that’s enough of that. I wonder if any of these men would have ever thought that we would be here 238 years later still honoring their bravery and sacrifice. Would they have thought for even a moment that we would set aside the anniversary of the day they signed their names to a document that would truly give birth to a new nation as a holiday? Did they think we would remember their names or did they not consider their places in history?

This vintage postcard, an artist’s interpretation, of the signing of the Declaration of Independence is from the Raphael Tuck and Sons company. It dates back to 1907. It, like most of the rest of the Patriotic Art on Free Vintage Art should print at the 4×6 inch postcard size.

56 men signed the document the United States was built upon:

John Hancock (president of the Continental Congress), Josiah Bartlett, William Whipple, Matthew Thornton, Samuel Adams, John Adams, Robert Treat Paine, Elbridge Gerry, Stephen Hopkins, William Ellery, Roger Sherman, Samuel Huntington, William Williams, Oliver Wolcott, William Floyd, Philip Livingston, Francis Lewis, Lewis Morris, Richard Stockton, John Witherspoon, Francis Hopkinson, John Hart, Abraham Clark, Robert Morris, Benjamin Rush, Benjamin Franklin, John Morton, George Clymer, James Smith, George Taylor, James Wilson, George Ross, Caesar Rodney, George Read, Thomas McKean, Samuel Chase, William Paca, Thomas Stone, Charles Carroll of Carrollton, George Wythe, Richard Henry Lee, Thomas Jefferson, Benjamin Harrison, Thomas Nelson, Jr., Francis Lightfoot Lee, Carter Braxton, William Hooper, Joseph Hewes, John Penn, Edward Rutledge, Thomas Heyward, Jr., Thomas Lynch, Jr., Arthur Middleton, Button Gwinnett, Lyman Hall, and George Walton.

Benjamin Franklin was the oldest signatory at 70 and Edward Rutledge was the youngest at 26. Two would become presidents – John Adams and Thomas Jefferson. All risked everything.

vintage postcard of the signing of the Declaration of Independence

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