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Chapter 68:

The people of the United colonies demand Inde-Pendence.

June—July, 1776.

American independence was not an act of sudden
CHAP. Lxviii} 1776. June.
passion, nor the work of one man or one assembly. It had been discussed in every part of the country by farmers and merchants, by mechanics and planters, by the fishermen along the coast and by the backwoodsmen of the West; in town meetings and from the pulpit; at social gatherings and around the camp fires; in newspapers and in pamphlets; in county conventions and conferences of committees; in colonial congresses and assemblies. The decision was put off only to hear the voice of the people. Virginia having uttered her will, and communicated it to all her sister colonies, proceeded as though independence had been proclaimed, to form her constitution. More counsellors waited on her assembly than they took notice of; they were aided in their deliberations by the teachings of the lawgivers of Greece; by the long line of magistrates who had framed the Roman

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