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07/06/2009 06:30 AM ID: 79496 Permalink   

Perfect Original Copy of Declaration of Independence Found in Britain


A bookseller doing research in Britain's National Archive stumbled across an original copy of the Declaration of Independence, one of only 26 known to still exist and the third copy in the National Archive; 200 were originally made on July 4th, 1776.

It was mixed in with 18th century U.S. colonial correspondences which the British had intercepted, but how this occurred isn't known. One theory is that the Royal Navy captured it while fighting in the American Revolutionary War.

The last copy was found in 1989 and sold for £4.94 million. A spokesman said: "It is likely that only around 200 of these were ever printed, so uncovering a new one nearly 250 years later is extremely rare, especially one in such good condition."

    WebReporter: caution2 Show Calling Card      
ASSESS this news: BLOCK this news. Reason:
In other words, it is stolen and should be returned to the US government. ;)

No, I don't seriously expect that to happen or for anyone to even seriously suggest it, but..
  by: velger   07/06/2009 05:48 PM     
i would agree... however for devil's adovocate i will say this, this is EXACTLY what the US has done for years, take historical artifacts from the countries they come from, usually to put on display for profit.

to the rest:

to the american's that defend the piracy america has always been involved in (including the recent one of stealing treasure from a sunken ship from spain)... how much are you willing you pay to get your history back? (or should they do what certian americans suggested and just dumped it back where-ever they found it, i bet more than a few american would find that disrespectful), since america has held historical artifacts for ransom for a long time, not to mention the fact that we have entire museums dedictated to stolen war plunder that was later sold to them by returning soldiers that toke such items from their country of origin... this is no different.
  by: HAVOC666     07/06/2009 06:24 PM     
  @ HAVOC666  
The US is not the first, nor only, nor will it be the last, country to hold historical artifacts for ransom in museums.

That said, keeping /their/ historical artifacts for ransom merely justifies the behavior. It would be much better to make a large public example of giving it back and explaining why it is a problem to keep historical artifacts stolen from other countries. Two wrongs, as they say, don't make a right.

They just make the first person to do wrong feel as if they were right in doing so.
  by: velger   07/06/2009 06:41 PM     
My suggestion: Highlight this section:
"We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. That to secure these rights, governments are instituted among men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed. That whenever any form of government becomes destructive to these ends, it is the right of the people to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their safety and happiness."

Then make an arrow off the side and write LOL!!!!!!1 Then frame it. Our government does NOT believe we are created equal, does NOT believe we have any rights at all, and would LOL if we tried to abolish it for becoming destructive.
  by: deadvenusblue     07/06/2009 06:55 PM     
  @velger and deadvenus  
"It would be much better to make a large public example of giving it back and explaining why it is a problem to keep historical artifacts stolen from other countries."

or better yet, use it as a collective barginning chip to achieve exactly that...

no offence but if you think giving the US back a document will even so much as influence america's choice to hold stolen historical artifact from other countries, then quit frankly you're naive, american philosophy is one of global domininion, to the people there rule america america is above all other countries and shouldn't be held to the same standards, until the attitude that underlays america (which used to simply be called manifest destiny, which states america has the devine right to expand and take over other nations and take whatever they want, thats how the US aquired hawaii) changes i don't see their stealing and withholding historical arifacts as a policy thats going to change anytime soon, regardless of returning a priceless historical artifact.

like i said i agree with your original statement, but the devil's advocate needs to be played, esspecially when america does this DELIBERATELY, when this was accidental apparently


"and would LOL if we tried to abolish it for becoming destructive."

not quite... they usually label that person a terrorist first.... like bill ayer's, whom targetted government buildings like the pentagon (not even the government workers) in his anti-war protests.
  by: HAVOC666     07/06/2009 07:30 PM     
Good point! But I'm still sure there would be some LOLing going on. Probably as the person in question was being tortured.

  by: deadvenusblue     07/06/2009 07:42 PM     
Actually the old European powers are probably worse in terms of having 'stolen' (quotes because sometimes they were gifts at the time) artifacts... That's why the museums of Europe are so great.

Personally, I think we can just consider it another consequence of imperialism... and certainly not the worst. As long as they remain accessible to the public (outside of private collection), I don't think there's too much of a problem with them being out of their places of origin.
  by: bane39   07/06/2009 07:54 PM     
  They need to give that back...  
I have a feeling we'll be needing it soon.
  by: groovedaddy   07/06/2009 08:06 PM     
oh i fully agree... the british empire was the worst for it... the US just took their place in terms of more modern times.... the the british plundered to eygpt and the immediately surrounding area alone is without a doubt historically worth more than the the US has ever plundered.

"As long as they remain accessible to the public (outside of private collection), I don't think there's too much of a problem with them being out of their places of origin."

if it wasn't done for profit and credit given to it origin, i would have no problem with it... however, its not run at cost and is run for profit... if digital piracy is considered illegal, and even moreso if you profit from it, imagine how illegal this *should* be when in most cases they are one of kind (even a copy of the declaration of independece isn't THAT priceless), IE litterally stolen, not just a copy, or a digital duplication, then turned around and profit from that meanwhile if you do that to anything patented or copyrights you will be sue for MANY times whatever you took or duplicated was worth.

however if the country of origin wants their items back it should be given back immediately, and without regard to illegitiment private ownership... if ANY compensenation is given it should only be for the actual cost of recovery and delivery and if anything further only as a reward for doing what should have been done in the first place. however in case like item in the vactican or in the old british empire or in the US in almost all cases they actually went out of their way to plunder it, it wasn't merely found by chance... basically in most case they are grave robbers and nothing more.
  by: HAVOC666     07/06/2009 08:21 PM     
have you american got your bill of rights back yet... that just seems to disappear with the patriot act:

haven't heard anyhting about it since the media started telling people the implication of it on the bill of rights. which elimated all but the 3rd admendment... and worst of all it wasn't even stolen nor held by another country, but rather by the government itself.

if the bill of rights became meaningless that fast what hope does one of many copies of the declaration of independence have, which has been trampled one for at least a century with even greater ease than the elimation of the bill of rights?

the copy is meaningless if the original which is identical can't even be upheld.
  by: HAVOC666     07/06/2009 08:35 PM     
  @ Returning Declaration of Independence  
I do not believe that Britain should return their newly found copy of the Declaration of Independence. This document is of just as much historical importance to Britain as it is to the U.S.A.

Before anyone gets huffy, I am a U.S. citizen.
  by: smarta$$     07/06/2009 10:23 PM     
yes, I know there were copies but how in the helk did they make copies back then?
  by: John E Angel     07/07/2009 12:39 AM     
The same way copies of anything were made back then, with a neat little invention called the printing press.
  by: caution2     07/07/2009 01:12 AM     
Well, as far as I'm concerned, the majority of the federal govt is in violation of the constitution. A govt this large is exactly what the framers intended to avoid. The Office of the President has entirely too much power. From issuing executive orders to regulatory commission edicts, it all should go. When the President starts issuing executive orders that have the authority of law...that's not a republic, that's a dictatorship.

At this point, I'm all for tearing it all down. Why don't we just switch to Anarchy. I mean, I can F*!k things up all by myself. I don't need someone who thinks that have my best interests at heart doing it for me.

Maybe I go too far, but it's not just the US, it's the entire Western World, I fear. It's spreading, like in Montreal, they're (or were) trying to make it illegal to call a cop a "dough-nut eater" lol. I know, it sounds funny. I know Canada in general was trying to follow suit with the UK and make it illegal to photograph/film cops. I don't know if this law ever passed.

All of that aside, it's only going to get worse, until they push people too far. Then, the people will start pushing back. That's why this whole gun restriction stance of Obama scares me. Maybe I'm just being paranoid. I hope so.
  by: groovedaddy   07/07/2009 02:15 AM     
  Back on topic a bit  
Good for whoever found it, nice little sum of cash right there. Screw Spain on that gold ship as well, finders keepers.
  by: DaReapaMan   07/07/2009 02:52 AM     
  Looks to me like  
this copy is defaced by some sort of royal stamp.
  by: H. W. Hutchins   07/07/2009 07:03 AM     
The article nor Caution said anything about America wanting it back. So this whole who steals more plundering and blah de bloo is for what other than some shits and giggles?

For now it is good Britain has 3 copies so if we the people actually need to see what the Declaration looked like since the gov't has went so beyond that nice paper.

Remember it did not start with Obama or Bush#2. It has been happening for a long time. Oh and if the following phrase is used to errode our rights more "It's for the children!" we need to take every sentance and every word apart before we blindly agree to it.
  by: TaraB     07/07/2009 07:30 AM     
Maybe we should give them more of our valuables, we apparently can't keep track of them.
  by: caution2     07/07/2009 08:55 AM     
  Leave it there  
No better reason than it has been subject to good care and respect. We are declaring independence from our oppressors, they needed a copy more than anyone else. The other copies are just PR fluff announcing to the world, "We are mad as hell! We are not going to take this anymore!" We sold it eventually as truth by proving it with blood & action that compelled the world to view us as a world power. Despite the knee-jerk reaction of a lefty prez and left-leaning congress to cheapen and degrade the price our children have payed with blood & guts!
  by: cwpaul   07/10/2009 08:08 AM     
I just got back to this thread and missed that link. I really feel a sick thud in my stomach.

How the hell can these employees steal them in some of the cases and of course those sold will probably never be found. They are in some rich assholes private collection.

I wish there was some way we could find people that are truly honest and only has the goal of protecting and helping other citizens see many of the important parts of our country.

I am so tired of the greedy people, the people that have no conscience, the way some of the people in our society are turning out. Where are the honest and responsible people? It's just so depressing.
  by: TaraB     07/10/2009 08:40 AM     
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