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How to Use The Little Book Northwest Ordinance of 1787

A. The Declaration of Independence        July 4, 1776
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The Declaration of Independence was written by Thomas Jefferson and signed by representatives of the thirteen colonies under the words, "with a firm reliance on the protection of Divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes and our sacred Honor." It was a courageous thing to do, because the signers were defying British rule. The Declaration did the following:
It explained the purpose of government:
"All men are created equal" and have certain unalienable rights such as "life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness."
Government receives from the people the right to govern, and the people expect the government to respect their rights.
If the government does not protect the rights of the people, the people have the right to "alter (change) or abolish" the government.

It gave the reasons for separating from England in the form of a list of grievances (complaints) against the English King George III. Among them were:
The refusal to give the colonies representation in (to have a voice in) the British government.
The leveying of unfair taxes against the colonies.
The quartering of British troops among the colonists.

It formally declared the colonies free and independent states.

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