World News

Another Copy of the Declaration of Independence Has Been Found in England

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Harvard researchers recently uncovered a second handwritten copy of the Declaration of Independence on a piece of parchment the same size as the Matlack Declaration on view at the National Archive in Washington D.C. Interestingly, the most obvious difference is that the newly discovered version is written horizontally. While there are several other known copies of the Declaration of Independence, the uncovered Sussex Declaration is the only other copy that was written by hand on a piece of parchment paper instead of small, letter-sized pieces of paper.

Dubbed the Sussex Declaration due to the parchment’s found location in a records office in Sussex County, England, CNN writes that the copy was written in the United States. At one point, it was probably owned by the Third Duke of Richmond since he supported Americans during their fight for independence, though this doesn’t explain why the manuscript made it to England.

According to Harvard, the “list of the names of the signers is not in state order, as was typical; the names are scrambled, and several are misspelled.” Their press release explains the hypothesis that the lack of order of the names suggests that the writers were conveying a vision of a united people instead of a group of individualistic states.