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Free Quiz Home > Social Science > United States History > Interactive John Trumbull's “Declaration of Independence”.

Interactive John Trumbull's “Declaration of Independence”.

On this page you will find an interactive version of John Trumbull's famous painting, "Declaration of Independence". First, a few words about the painting and its author.

John Trumbull (1756 - 1843) was a contemporary of many of the events depicted in his famous paintings. He came from a prominent colonial family and his father was a Governor of Connecticut. During the Revolutionary War, John Trumbull served as a soldier and then as an aid to George Washington. It's hard to imagine anyone more qualified to have created works of art about the American Revolution. Trumbull's "Declaration of Independence" was commissioned in 1817 by the Senate and purchased in 1819. The painting dimensions are 18' x 12'.

Contrary to popular belief, "Declaration of Independence" doesn't show the actual signing of the historical document. What it does show is the presentation of the draft of the Declaration by the "Committee of Five". The committee consisted of Thomas Jefferson (the primary author), Benjamin Franklin, John Adams, Robert R. Livingston and Roger Sherman. They can all be seen standing in the center of the painting.

There are 47 people shown, but 5 of them did not sign the Declaration of Independence. Also, 14 out of the total 56 signers of the Declaration are not included in the painting.

John Trumbull's "Declaration of Independence" is one of the oldest and most prominent elements of Americana. It is exhibited in the Capitol Rotunda in Washington, DC. It is also depicted on the back of the $2 bill.

Instructions:
1) The Interactive Painting requires Flash Player 8 or higher. If you don't see the painting, you will need to upgrade your Flash Player.
2) Move the mouse over the person that you would like to identify. You will see the name and a short biographical note of that person on top of the painting.
3) To find out more about the highlighted person, click on the "More" button in the top right corner. This will open a web page with additional information.



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