Place Published: Edinburgh
Publisher: The Weekly Magazine, or Edinburgh Amusement
Date Published: 1775
Edition: 1st Edition
From The Continental Congress - Declaration of the Causes and Necessity of Taking up Arms
Newspaper, The Weekly Magazine, or Edinburgh Amusement, 5-1/4 x 8-1/4, August 24, 1775, 32pp., disbound, VG. From the interior, 3-1/2 pages and signed in type by John Hancock, President, a complete printing of Causes and Necessity of Taking up Arms.
In part, A Declaration by the Representatives of the United Colonies of North-America, now met in Congress at Philadelphia, setting forth the causes and necessity of their taking up arms. ... Parliament was influenced to adopt the pernicious project, and assuming a new power over them, have in the course of eleven years, given such decisive specimens of the spirit and consequences attending this power, as to leave no doubt concerning the effects of acquiescence under it.
They have undertaken to give and grant our money without our consent, though we have ever exercised an exclusive right to dispose of our own property; statutes have been passed for extending the jurisdiction of courts of admiralty and vice-admiralty beyond their ancient limits; for depriving us of the accustomed and inestimable privilege of trial by jury, in cases affecting both life and property; for suspending the legislature of one of the colonies; for interdicting all commerce to the capital of another; and for altering fundamentally the form of government established by charter, soldiers upon the colonists in time of profound peace. It has also been resolved in parliament, that colonists charged with committing certain offences, shall be transported to England to be tried. ... and secured by acts of its own legislature solemnly confirmed by the crown; for exempting the " murderers " of colonists from legal trial, and in effect, from punishment; for erecting in a neighbouring province, acquired by the joint arms of Great-Britain and America, a despotism dangerous to our very existence; and for quartering Soon after the intelligence of these proceedings arrived on this continent, general Gage, who in the course of the last year had taken possession of the town of Boston, in the province of Massachusetts-Bay, and still occupied it is as a garrison, on the 19th day of April, sent out from that place a large detachment of his army, who made an unprovoked assault on the inhabitants of the said province, at the town of Lexington, as appears by the affidavits of a great number of persons, some of whom were officers and soldiers of that detachment, murdered eight of the inhabitants, and wounded many others. From thence the troops proceeded in warlike array to the town of Concord, where they set upon another party of the inhabitants of the same province, killing several and wounding more, until compelled to retreat by the country people suddenly assembled to repel this cruel aggression. ... Our cause is just. Our union is perfect. Our internal resources are great, and, if necessary, foreign assistance is undoubtedly attainable. We gratefully acknowledge, as signal instances of the Divine favour towards us, that his Providence would not permit us to be called into this severe controversy, until we were grown up to our present strength, had been previously exercised in warlike operation, and possessed of the means of defending ourselves. With hearts fortified with these animating reflections, we most solemnly, before God and the world, declare, that, exerting the utmost energy of those powers, which our beneficent Creator hath graciously bestowed upon us, the arms we have been compelled by our enemies to assume, we will, in defiance of every hazard, with unabating firmness and perseverence, employ for the preservation of our liberties; being with one mind resolved to die freemen rather then to live slaves....
The document was prepared by the Second Continental Congress to explain to the world why the American colonies had taken up arms against Great Britain. It is a combination of the work of Thomas Jefferson and Colonel John Dickinson (well-known for his series "Letters from a Pennsylvania Farmer."). Jefferson completed the first draft, but it was perceived by the Contenential Congress as too harsh and militant. Dickinson prepared the second. The final document combined the work of the two.
There is a couple of other references in this newspaper beyond the declaration article on p.279-281. General Lee's letter to General Burgoyne June 7, 1775 p276 1/2 page to p.278 and two extracts from letters on p.284 talking about the American Revolution.
Very Good. Item #3477