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Paine immigrated to Philadelphia in 1774 and soon became acquainted with advocates of political change. In January 1776, he published Common Sense, the first pamphlet to advocate American independence. It outlined ideas that would remain central to Paine’s thought: the superiority of republican government over a monarchical system, equality of rights among all citizens, and the world significance of the American Revolution . Paine transformed the struggle over the rights of English people into a contest with meaning for people everywhere. In a world ‘overrun with oppression,’ America would be ‘an asylum for mankind.’

Some of Jefferson’s papers are supplemented on this website by transcriptions from the published editions listed below and from others supplied by Manuscript Division specialist Gerard Gawalt (since retired). There are some discrepancies with dates and other text between documents in the published editions and the manuscript images. This is because in some cases editors transcribed a different draft than the one the Library of Congress owns. In other cases archivists at the Library of Congress and editors of the published editions arrived at different interpretations of dates, correspondents, or other data. The published editions listed below were the source of the transcriptions used on the Library’s Web site.  They were chosen because they are out of copyright or otherwise in the public domain. For citations to the modern editions of Jefferson’s papers, see the bibliography in Related Resources.

American history papers

american history papers


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