Wikijunior:United States Charters of Freedom/Dunlap broadside

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A Dunlap broadside

The Dunlap Broadsides are the first 150-200 reproduction copies of the Declaration of Independence, printed on the night of July 4, 1776, by John Dunlap of Philadelphia. Unfortunately, the original handwritten copy of the Declaration that Congress sent to Dunlap has been lost. One Dunlap broadside was sent to George Washington on July 6, who had it read to his troops in New York on July 9.

As of 1989, only 24 copies of the Dunlap broadsides were known to exist, until a flea market shopper bought a framed painting for four American dollars. While inspecting a tear in the lining behind the painting, the owner discovered a folded Dunlap broadside.

This 25th copy of the Dunlap broadside was authenticated by Sotheby's and an independent expert. In June 2000, Norman Lear partnered with David Hayden to purchase the document at an online Sotheby's auction. They paid $8.14 million.

Of the 25 surviving copies of the Dunlap broadside, 21 copies belong to universities, historical societies, public libraries and city halls. The remaining four are in private hands, although promised to public collections.

List of copies[edit | edit source]

The 25 known Dunlap broadside copies listed by location within the United States (or last known location), alphabetically by state, then city; followed by the traveling copy in the United States and two copies in London, United Kingdom.

  • Connecticut, New Haven — Beinecke Library at Yale University
  • District of Columbia, Washington — Library of Congress, Rare Book and Special Collections Division
  • District of Columbia, Washington — Library of Congress, Manuscripts Division, Washington Papers — fragment copy with 54 lines; thought to be the copy George Washington read to the troops on July 9, 1776, in New York.
  • District of Columbia, Washington — National Archives — inserted into the Continental Congress manuscript journal, previously attached with a seal
  • Illinois, Chicago — Chicago Historical Society — signed by John Steward (1747-1829) of Goshen, New York; sold July 2, 1975, at auction, by Christie's London; later sold to the Chicago Historical Society
  • Indiana — Bloomington — Lilly Library at Indiana University — previous owner was Henry N. Flynt of Greenwich, Connecticut
  • Maine, Portland — Maine Historical Society — given to the society in 1893 at the bequest of John S. H. Fogg.
  • Maryland, Baltimore — Maryland Historical Society — fragment of upper left area of the document, including the first 36 lines.
  • Massachusetts, Boston — Massachusetts Historical Society
  • Massachusetts, Cambridge — Houghton Library at Harvard University — donated in 1947 by Carleton R. Richmond
  • Massachusetts, Williamstown — Williams College — previously owned by the Wood family; sold at auction, April 22, 1983, by Christie's New York.
  • New Jersey, Princeton — Scheide Library (Scheide Library circa 1959 is a living gift from W. H. "Bill" Scheide to the Fireston Library at Princeton University — currently owned by William H. Scheide; bought by John H. Scheide from A. S. W. Rosenbach
  • New York, New York (last known location) — sold by the New York Historical Society to a private collector in the United States.
  • New York, New York — New York Public Library
  • New York, New York — Morgan Library — once owned by the Chew family; sold April 1, 1982, at auction at Christie's New York.
  • New Hampshire, Exeter — American Independence Museum (created around the document) operated by the New Hampshire Society of the Cincinnati — copy discovered in 1985 in the Ladd-Gilman House in Exeter.
  • Pennsylvania, Philadelphia — American Philosophical Society — acquired from the Library of Congress in 1901 in a trade for Benjamin Franklin's Passy imprint of The Boston Independent Chronicle "Supplement".
  • Pennsylvania, Philadelphia — Historical Society of Pennsylvania — fragment including the first 32 lines; thought to be likely an uncorrected proof; from the Frank M. Ketting collection; Ketting asserted it was this document that had been read in public; however, Charles Henry Hart wrote in 1900: "The endorsement is in the handwriting of the late Frank M. Etting, who died insane, one of the most inexact and inaccurate of collectors."
  • Pennsylvania, Philadelphia — Independence National Historic Park — previously owned by Col. John Nixon, appointed by the sheriff of Philadelphia to read the Declaration of Independence to the public on July 8, 1776, in the State House yard; presented to the park by his heirs in 1951.
  • Texas, Dallas — Dallas Public Library — "The Leary Copy" discovered in 1968 amid the stock of Leary's Book Store of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in a crate that had been unopened since 1911. Ira G. Corn Jr. and Joseph P. Driscoll of Dallas bought the manuscript on May 7, 1969. A group of 17 people later sold it to the Dallas city government.
  • Virginia, Charlottesville — University of Virginia (one of two copies owned by the university) — found in an attic in Albany, New York in 1955 where it had been used to wrap other papers. Bought by Charles E. Tuttle Company of Rutland, Vermont; later sold to David Randall, who sold it in 1956 to the university.
  • Virginia, Charlottesville — University of Virginia (one of two copies owned by the university) — "The H. Bradley Martin Copy"; exhibited at the Grolier Club in 1974; sold on January 31, 1990 to Albert H. Small, who gave it to the university.
  • Roving copy, traveling around the United States — found in the back of a picture frame bought at a yard sale for $4.00 at an Adamstown, Pennsylvania flea market; now owned by a consortium which includes Norman Lear; sold in 2000 for $8.14 million; previously sold for $2.42 million on June 4, 1991
  • United Kingdom, London — Public Record Office, Admiralty Papers — Vice Admiral Richard Howe sent this copy from the flagship Eagle, then "off of Staten Island" with a letter dated July 28, 1776
  • United Kingdom, London — Public Record Office, Colonial Office Papers — General William Howe and Vice Admiral Richard Howe from the flagship Eagle, off Staten Island, sent this copy with a letter dated August 11, 1776, which stated, "A printed copy of this Declaration of Independency came accidentally to our hands a few days after the dispatch of the Mercury packet, and we have the honor to enclose it."

Source[edit | edit source]

Basically a junior version of the Wikipedia article