Friday, July 1, 2016

Independence Day Reading Suggestions from the Tennessee Library for the Blind and Physically Handicapped

This Independence Day marks the 240th anniversary of the date the Continental Congress adopted the Declaration of Independence, declaring the 13 original colonies free from British Empire.

Celebrated as a national holiday across the United States and its territories, the day is commonly associated with picnics, parades, family reunions, and fireworks. It is also a day to contemplate just what signing the Declaration of Independence meant for those 56 men who put ink onto parchment to assert their freedom.

The Tennessee Library for the Blind and Physically Handicapped (TLBPH) offers some book suggestions for those who want to learn more about Independence Day:

  • Signing Their Lives Away: The Fame and Misfortune of the Men Who Signed the Declaration of Independence, by Denise Kiernan, discuses the many strange fates that awaited the signers of the Declaration of Independence. For example, one was poisoned by a family member, one killed in a duel and one was lost at sea. This book is available for loan from TLBPH in audio format.

  • For a look at the battles following the signing of the Declaration, you may want to read David McCullough’s 1776, available in audio and large-print formats. Another book about that era with the same title but a different perspective is Thomas J. Fleming’s 1776, Year of Illusions, which studies both the realities and impressions Americans held about themselves that historic year. This title is available from TLBPH in audio format.

  • The full text of both the Declaration of Independence and the U.S. Constitution, including the twenty-seven amendments to the Constitution, is available in The Declaration of Independence and the Constitution of the United States, available in audio format.

TLBPH is a section of the Tennessee State Library & Archives, a division of Tennessee Secretary of State Tre Hargett’s office. For more information about the library, go to the website at:

The Tennessee State Library and Archives is a division of the Tennessee Department of State and Tre Hargett, Secretary of State

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