Lee Resolution - Independence from Britain

Lee Resolution - Independence from Britain American Revolution Famous Historical Events Law and Politics American History

On the 7th of June, 1776, Richard Henry Lee proposed a resolution to assert the independence of Britain's "United Colonies" in America. 

This image depicts that resolution.  Here are its words:

Resolved, That these United Colonies are, and of right ought to be, free and independent States, that they are absolved from all allegiance to the British Crown, and that all political connection between them and the State of Great Britain is, and ought to be, totally dissolved.

That it is expedient forthwith to take the most effectual measures for forming foreign Alliances.

That a plan of confederation be prepared and transmitted to the respective Colonies for their consideration and approbation.

The Library of Congress gives us a bit of information about the background of this key Revolutionary-Era document:

Richard Henry Lee of Virginia proposed independence for the American colonies by introducing this resolution in the Second Continental Congress on June 7, 1776.

On July 2, 1776, Congress passed the Lee Resolution, concerning which John Adams wrote, in a letter to his wife, Abigail, "The second day of July, 1776, will be the most memorable epoch in the history of America. I am apt to believe that it will be celebrated by succeeding generations as the great anniversary festival...with pomp and parade, with shows, games, sports, guns, bells, bonfires, and illuminations..."

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Author: Carole D. Bos, J.D. 5183stories and lessons created

Original Release: Oct 07, 2013

Updated Last Revision: Nov 22, 2019

Media Credits

Image online, courtesy U.S. National Archives


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