The men who signed the Declaration of Independence, adopted by the Continental Congress on July 4, 1776, were taking their lives in their hands when they did so — and that’s why their identities remained hidden for more than six months. A colony’s declaring independence from its mother country is usually frowned upon, and the Declaration would’ve meant high treason counts for every man that signed had the fight gone the other way. In January 1777, after the country had been at war for months, Congress ordered that every state get an original printed copy of the document. Only then were Founders’ John Hancocks – erm, signatures — revealed.
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