Papers of the Continental Congress, 1774-1789

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Original documents by the founding fathers.

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  • Created Date: 21 Dec 2006
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Description

The Papers of the Continental Congress are official records from the first three representative bodies of the original United Colonies and ultimately the United States of America. The First Continental Congress was formed in 1774 to address "intolerable acts" by the British Parliament. It ultimately formed the Second Continental Congress in May 1775 which, through 1781, was famously responsible for the Declaration of Independence and many critical articles establishing the United States of America. The Congress of the Confederation (1781-1789) immediately succeeded it after ratification of the Articles of Confederation and lasted through the end of the War for American Independence.

These are the important papers, letters, treaties, reports and assorted records - famous and obscure - relating to the formation of the United States government. While they contain exceedingly important reports, many of which may be well-known, they also contain much covering the day-to-day government of a fledgling country.

In these papers you'll find documents instrumental in forming the United States Government including the Northwest Ordinance, the Articles of Confederation, and lesser-known documents relating to treaties, military reports, and letters.

Look for names, places, and subjects that are pertinent to your research, or browse. They will provide you with a better understanding of the history of your heritage, through the words of the founding fathers.

Related Resources

Records from the Constitutional Convention of 1787, NARA M866.

Journals of proceedings, early drafts, and other papers relating to the formation of the US Constitution.

Miscellaneous Papers of the Continental Congress, NARA M332.

These documents were misplaced, overlooked, or found in private hands when the records of the Papers of the Continental Congress were first arranged in 1834.

Explore these titles

Search or browse Papers of the Continental Congress here.

Search or browse Miscellaneous Papers of the Continental Congress here.

Source

Publication number M247, Papers of the Continental Congress 1774-1789, is from NARA Record Group Number 360, Records of the Continental and Confederation Congresses and the Constitutional Convention. A nine-page descriptive pamphlet about this publication, provided by NARA, can be viewed or downloaded here.

Publication number M332, Miscellaneous Papers of the Continental Congress, 1774-1789, is from NARA Record Group Number 360, Records of the Continental and Confederation Congresses and the Constitutional Convention. The NARA descriptive pamphlet for this publication is available here

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