Rare copy of Declaration of Independence on display in New York City

MIDTOWN, Manhattan (WABC) -- The New York Public Library is showcasing a rare copy of the Declaration of Independence in honor of Independence Day.

Thomas Jefferson's handwritten document will be on display Monday and Tuesday at the Stephen A. Schwarzman Building on 42nd Street and Fifth Avenue.

The public can view the copy from 10 a.m. until 5 p.m. on Monday and from 10 a.m. until 7 p.m. on Tuesday.

The Declaration of Independence was completed on July 1, but before it was ratified on July 4, several changes were made.

In the days after July 4, the NYPL says Jefferson wrote out several copies of his original text and sent them to five or six friends. The library's copy is one of four copies that have survived intact.

The library acquired the copy in 1896 when a trustee of the NYPL donated it along with other items purchased from a collector.

The Declaration was previously held in the library's Manuscripts and Archives Division, but following this exhibit, it will be displayed in the Polonsky Exhibition of The New York Public Library's Treasures, a permanent exhibition scheduled to open in November 2020.

The Declaration of Independence will be featured alongside more than 100 other items from the library's extensive collections, including other notable pieces of Americana such as the original Bill of Rights, George Washington's handwritten farewell address and a letter from Christopher Columbus to King Ferdinand documenting his discovery of America.

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