It was July 4, 1776, that America's 13 colonies declared their independence from Great Britain and King George, a statement of freedom so brilliantly written by Thomas Jefferson. But did you know that the man who would be our third President was originally charged with writing the now famous document in early June?

According to, the delegates to the Continental Congress, sensing a favorable vote for independence, appointed a committee to draft a declaration of independence:

"John Adams said of Jefferson, "During the whole time I sat with him in Congress, I never heard him utter three sentences together." But he was known for his writing skills. The committee of five men picked Jefferson to write the declaration proclaiming the independence of the colonies."

Amazingly, the changes made to Jefferson's original draft were, to say the least, minimal. From the Library of Congress News:

"Jefferson originally had written the phrase "our fellow subjects." But he apparently changed his mind. Heavily scrawled over the word "subjects" was an alternative, the word 'citizens.'"

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