A few July 4 facts courtesy of the Delaware County Patriots.
- There were 56 signers to the Declaration of Independence.
- Benjamin Franklin, John Adams, Thomas Jefferson, Roger Sherman and Robert R. Livingston comprised the Committee of Five that drafted the Declaration. Jefferson, regarded as the strongest and most eloquent writer, wrote most of the document.
- John Hancock, President of the Second Continental Congress, was the first signer to the Declaration of Independence. He did so in an entirely blank space making it the largest and most famous signature — hence the term John Hancock, which is still used today as a synonym for signature.
- Benjamin Franklin (age 70), who represented Pennsylvania, was the oldest of the signers. Edward Rutledge (age 26), of South Carolina, was the youngest.
- Two future presidents signed, John Adams (second President) and Thomas Jefferson (third President). Both died on the 50th anniversary of signing the Declaration (July 4, 1826).
- Robert Livingston, who represented New York, was on the Committee of Five that drafted the Declaration of Independence but was recalled by his state before he could sign it.
- Charles Carroll, who represented Maryland, was the last surviving signer of the Declaration. He died in 1832 at the age of 95.
Happy Independence Day 2015