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“I am well aware of the toil and blood and treasure that it will cost us to maintain this Declaration and support and defend these States. Yet, through all the gloom, I can see the rays of ravishing light and glory. I can see that the end is more than worth all the means.”

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source: Familiar Letters of John Adams and His Wife, Abigail Adams (New York: Hurd and Houghton, 1976), 194.

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notes: Congress voted for and approved the resolution of independence on July 2, which is why this letter is dated July 3, 1776. John Dunlap printed the first copies of the Declaration of Independence during the night of July 4. Delegates to the Continental Congress signed the document on August 2.

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