The processes and events that led to independence, including acts of the Continental Congress, elite opinion, early Declarations of Independence, and the impact of the Declaration are all included here.
- British reactions: reactions in Britain and among Loyalists to the Declaration of Independence.
- Continental Congress: actions of Congress that led to independence.
- Declaration of Independence: texts and debates over the Declaration.
- Disseminating Declaration of Independence: the spread of knowledge of the Declaration from Philadelphia to the Army and populace.
- Elite opinion: views of opinion-makers, pro- and- con, about the Declaration.
- Local/state declarations, real and imagined: declarations of independence made in towns, counties, and states prior to the national declaration; political activity later construed (inappropriately) to be declarations.