The Declaration of Independence -- Engrossed Version

Color image of the handwritten Declaration of Independence.
Most of the delegates to the Second Continental Congress signed the the handwritten Declaration of Independence on August 2, 1776.

National Archives and Records Administration

On July 19, the Congress ordered the Declaration to be fairly engrossed (formally handwritten) on parchment and the title changed from A Declaration by the Representatives of the United States of America in General Congress assembled to The Unanimous Declaration of the Thirteen United States of America. Timothy Matlack, assistant to Charles Thomson, engrossed the document. On August 2, 1776, most of the members of the Continental Congress assembled in Independence Hall and “the declaration of independence being engrossed and compared at the table was signed.”

The Extant (Existing) Documents

The engrossed copy is on display at the National Archives in Washington, D.C.

At Independence National Historical Park, join in...

During a tour of Independence Hall, stand inside the Assembly Room where the Declaration was signed. After the tour, view the Syng Inkstand displayed in the West Wing. See the man behind the handwriting, Timothy Matlack, at the Second Bank Portrait Gallery.

Last updated: March 21, 2019