Before viewing "Common Sense and the American Revolution," read and view the following materials. They represent a selection made by the professor based on the readings available to the onscreen teachers. For additional primary source readings, go to Resources.
Documents | A Biography of America Videos
Primary Sources: Documents
(Click here for information on using primary source documents)
Common Sense, January 10, 1776 HTML Version | PDF Version (35 pages)
Common Sense, a pamphlet written by Thomas Paine, makes a case, in accessible and stirring language, for independence.
The Olive Branch Petition, July 5, 1775
The Olive Branch Petition, adopted by the Second Continental Congress and submitted to King George III, attempts to assert the rights of the colonists while maintaining their loyalty to the British crown.
The Declaration of Independence, July 4, 1776
Congress adopts the formal Declaration of Independence on July 4.
Buckingham County, Virginia, Statement of Independence, June 14, 1776
Buckingham County, Virginia, gives these instructions to their delegates to the Second Continental Congress.
James City County, Virginia, Statement of Independence, April 24, 1776
A majority of freeholders in James City County, Virginia, vote to give these instructions to their representatives to the Second Continental Congress.
Malden, Massachusetts, Statement of Independence, May 27, 1776
Malden, Massachusetts, residents unanimously adopt these instructions, which they give to their representative to the Second Continental Congress.