United States Senate
The United States Senate is the upper chamber of the United States Congress, which along with the United States House of Representatives—the lower chamber—comprises the legislature of the United States. The Senate chamber is located in the north wing of the Capitol, in Washington, D. C; the composition and powers of the Senate are established by Article One of the United States Constitution. The Senate is composed of senators; each state, regardless of its population size, is represented by two senators who serve staggered terms of six years. There being at present 50 states in the Union, there are presently 100 senators. From 1789 until 1913, senators were appointed by legislatures of the states; as the upper chamber of Congress, the Senate has several powers of advice and consent which are unique to it. These include the approval of treaties, the confirmation of Cabinet secretaries, Supreme Court justices, federal judges, flag officers, regulatory officials, other federal executive officials and other federal uniformed officers.
In addition to these, in cases wherein no candidate receives a majority of electors for Vice President, the duty falls to the Senate to elect one of the top two recipients of electors for that office. Furthermore, the Senate has the responsibility of conducting the trials of those impeached by the House; the Senate is considered both a more deliberative and more prestigious body than the House of Representatives due to its longer terms, smaller size, statewide constituencies, which led to a more collegial and less partisan atmosphere. The presiding officer of the Senate is the Vice President of the United States, President of the Senate. In the Vice President's absence, the President Pro Tempore, customarily the senior member of the party holding a majority of seats, presides over the Senate. In the early 20th century, the practice of majority and minority parties electing their floor leaders began, although they are not constitutional officers; the drafters of the Constitution created a bicameral Congress as a compromise between those who felt that each state, since it was sovereign, should be represented, those who felt the legislature must directly represent the people, as the House of Commons did in Great Britain.
This idea of having one chamber represent people while the other gives equal representation to states regardless of population, was known as the Connecticut Compromise. There was a desire to have two Houses that could act as an internal check on each other. One was intended to be a "People's House" directly elected by the people, with short terms obliging the representatives to remain close to their constituents; the other was intended to represent the states to such extent as they retained their sovereignty except for the powers expressly delegated to the national government. The Senate was thus not designed to serve the people of the United States equally; the Constitution provides that the approval of both chambers is necessary for the passage of legislation. First convened in 1789, the Senate of the United States was formed on the example of the ancient Roman Senate; the name is derived from Latin for council of elders. James Madison made the following comment about the Senate: In England, at this day, if elections were open to all classes of people, the property of landed proprietors would be insecure.
An agrarian law would soon take place. If these observations be just, our government ought to secure the permanent interests of the country against innovation. Landholders ought to have a share in the government, to support these invaluable interests, to balance and check the other, they ought to be so constituted. The Senate, ought to be this body. Article Five of the Constitution stipulates that no constitutional amendment may be created to deprive a state of its equal suffrage in the Senate without that state's consent; the District of Columbia and all other territories are not entitled to representation allowed to vote in either House of the Congress. The District of Columbia elects two "shadow U. S. Senators", but they are officials of the D. C. City Government and not members of the U. S. Senate; the United States has had 50 states since 1959, thus the Senate has had 100 senators since 1959. The disparity between the most and least populous states has grown since the Connecticut Compromise, which granted each state two members of the Senate and at least one member of the House of Representatives, for a total minimum of three presidential electors, regardless of population.
In 1787, Virginia had ten times the population of Rhode Island, whereas today California has 70 times the population of Wyoming, based on the 1790 and 2000 censuses. This means some citizens are two orders of magnitude better represented in the Senate than those in other states. Seats in the House of Representatives are proportionate to the population of each state, reducing the disparity of representation. Before the adoption of the Seventeenth Amendment in 1913, senators were elected by the individual state legislatures. Problems with repeated vacant seats due to the inability of a legislature to elect senators, intrastate political struggles, bribery and intimidation had led to a growing movement to amend the Constitution to allow for the direct election of senators; the party composition of the Senate during the 116th Congress: Art
New Castle, Delaware
New Castle is a city in New Castle County, six miles south of Wilmington, situated on the Delaware River. According to the 2010 Census, the population of the city is 5,285. New Castle was settled by the Dutch West India Company in 1651, under the leadership of Peter Stuyvesant, on the site of a former aboriginal village, "Tomakonck", to assert their claim to the area based on a prior agreement with the aboriginal inhabitants of the area; the Dutch named the settlement Fort Casimir, but this was changed to Fort Trinity following its seizure by the colony of New Sweden on Trinity Sunday, 1654. The Dutch conquered the entire colony of New Sweden the following year and rechristened the fort Nieuw-Amstel; this marked the end of the Swedish colony in Delaware as an official entity, but it remained a semi-autonomous unit within the New Netherland colony and the cultural and religious influence of the Swedish settlers remained strong. As the settlement grew, Dutch authorities laid out a grid of streets and established the town common, which continue to this day.
In 1664, the English seized the entire New Netherland colony in the Second Anglo-Dutch War. They made it the capital of their Delaware Colony; the Dutch regained the town in 1673 during the Third Anglo-Dutch War but it was returned to Great Britain the next year under the Treaty of Westminster. In 1680, New Castle was conveyed to William Penn by the Duke of York by livery of seisin and was Penn's landing place when he first set foot on American soil on October 27, 1682; this transfer to Penn was contested by Lord Baltimore and the boundary dispute was not resolved until the survey conducted by Mason and Dixon, now famed in history as the Mason–Dixon line. The spire on top of the Court House, Delaware's colonial capitol and first state house, was used as the center of the Twelve-Mile Circle forming the northern boundary of Delaware; the Delaware River within this radius to the low water mark on the opposite shore is part of Delaware. Thus the Delaware Memorial Bridge was built as an intrastate span by Delaware, without financial participation by neighboring New Jersey.
Prior to the establishment of Penn's Philadelphia, New Castle was a center of government. After being transferred to Penn, Delaware's Swedish and English residents used to the relaxed culture of the Restoration monarchy grew uncomfortable with the more conservative Quaker influence, so Delaware petitioned for a separate legislature, granted in 1702. Delaware formally broke from Pennsylvania in 1704. New Castle again became the seat of the colonial government, thriving with the various judges and lawyers that fueled the economy. Many smaller houses were replaced in this era. In February 1777, John McKinly was elected the first President of Delaware. During the Revolution, when New Castle was besieged by William Howe, the government elected to move its functions south to Dover in May 1777. McKinley was captured by the held prisoner for several months. New Castle remained the county seat until after the Civil War, when that status was transferred to Wilmington. Three signers of the Declaration of Independence were from New Castle—Thomas McKean, George Read, George Ross.
The 16-mile portage between the Delaware River and Chesapeake Bay saved a 400-mile trip around the Delmarva Peninsula, so this brought passengers and business to New Castle's port. In the years following the Revolution, a turnpike was built to facilitate travel between the two major waterways. New Castle became the eastern terminus of the New Castle and Frenchtown Railroad, the second-oldest rail line in the country, launched in 1828 with horse-drawn rail cars converting to steam power when an engine was purchased from Great Britain in 1832; the line traversed the Delmarva Peninsula, running to the Elk River, from where passengers changed to packet boats for further travel to Baltimore and points south. This helped the New Castle economy to further boom; the decline in New Castle's economy had the long-range fortunate effect of preventing most residents from making any significant structural changes to their homes. So, the many buildings of historic New Castle look much as they did in the colonial and Federal periods.
New Castle has a tradition, dating back to 1927, of tours of historical homes and gardens. These tours, called "A Day in Olde New Castle", are held on the third Saturday of May. Householders dress in colonial costumes and an admittance fee is collected, used toward the maintenance of the town's many historic buildings. In June the town holds its annual Separation Day celebration. On April 28, 1961, an F3 tornado hit the north side. Although no fatalities or injuries occurred, it was the only tornado of this magnitude recorded in Delaware. In the City of New Castle, many small and historical neighborhoods are within the city limits. However, many larger neighborhoods are surrounding the city limits and are labeled as New Castle within the general consensus; the New Castle area ranges from the southern city limits of Wilmington to the north, the Delaware River to the East, Wrangle Hill Road to the South, Bear and Christiana to the West. City of New Castle Shawtown Dobbinsville Washington Park Battery Park 6th & DelawareOutside neighborhoods Chelsea Estates Penn Acres Collins Park Minquadale Wilmington Manor Commons Boulevard Midvale Jefferson Farms Castle H
Delaware is one of the 50 states of the United States, in the South-Atlantic or Southern region. It is bordered to the south and west by Maryland, north by Pennsylvania, east by New Jersey and the Atlantic Ocean; the state takes its name from Thomas West, 3rd Baron De La Warr, an English nobleman and Virginia's first colonial governor. Delaware occupies the northeastern portion of the Delmarva Peninsula. It's the sixth most densely populated. Delaware's largest city is Wilmington; the state is divided into the lowest number of any state. From north to south, they are New Castle County, Kent County, Sussex County. While the southern two counties have been predominantly agricultural, New Castle County is more industrialized. Before its coastline was explored by Europeans in the 16th century, Delaware was inhabited by several groups of Native Americans, including the Lenape in the north and Nanticoke in the south, it was colonized by Dutch traders at Zwaanendael, near the present town of Lewes, in 1631.
Delaware was one of the 13 colonies participating in the American Revolution. On December 7, 1787, Delaware became the first state to ratify the Constitution of the United States, has since been known as "The First State"; the state was named after the Delaware River, which in turn derived its name from Thomas West, 3rd Baron De La Warr, the ruling governor of the Colony of Virginia at the time Europeans first explored the river. The Delaware Indians, a name used by Europeans for Lenape people indigenous to the Delaware Valley derive their name from the same source; the surname de La Warr is of Anglo-Norman origin. It came from a Norman lieu-dit La Guerre; this toponymic could derive from the Latin word ager, from the Breton gwern or from the Late Latin varectum. The toponyms Gara, Gaire appear in old texts cited by Lucien Musset, where the word gara means gore, it could be linked with a patronymic from the Old Norse verr. Delaware is 96 miles long and ranges from 9 miles to 35 miles across, totaling 1,954 square miles, making it the second-smallest state in the United States after Rhode Island.
Delaware is bounded to the north by Pennsylvania. Small portions of Delaware are situated on the eastern side of the Delaware River sharing land boundaries with New Jersey; the state of Delaware, together with the Eastern Shore counties of Maryland and two counties of Virginia, form the Delmarva Peninsula, which stretches down the Mid-Atlantic Coast. The definition of the northern boundary of the state is unusual. Most of the boundary between Delaware and Pennsylvania was defined by an arc extending 12 miles from the cupola of the courthouse in the city of New Castle; this boundary is referred to as the Twelve-Mile Circle. Although the Twelve-Mile Circle is claimed to be the only territorial boundary in the United States, a true arc, the Mexican boundary with Texas includes several arcs, many cities in the South have circular boundaries; this border extends all the way east to the low-tide mark on the New Jersey shore continues south along the shoreline until it again reaches the 12-mile arc in the south.
To the west, a portion of the arc extends past the easternmost edge of Maryland. The remaining western border runs east of due south from its intersection with the arc; the Wedge of land between the northwest part of the arc and the Maryland border was claimed by both Delaware and Pennsylvania until 1921, when Delaware's claim was confirmed. Delaware is with the lowest mean elevation of any state in the nation, its highest elevation, located at Ebright Azimuth, near Concord High School, is less than 450 feet above sea level. The northernmost part of the state is part of the Piedmont Plateau with rolling surfaces; the Atlantic Seaboard fall line follows the Robert Kirkwood Highway between Newark and Wilmington. A ridge about 75 to 80 feet in elevation extends along the western boundary of the state and separates the watersheds that feed Delaware River and Bay to the east and the Chesapeake Bay to the west. Since all of Delaware is a part of the Atlantic coastal plain, the effects of the ocean moderate its climate.
The state lies in the humid subtropical climate zone. Despite its small size, there is significant variation in mean temperature and amount of snowfall between Sussex County and New Castle County. Moderated by the Atlantic Ocean and Delaware Bay, the southern portion of the state has a milder climate and a longer growing season than the northern portion of the state. Delaware's all-time record high of 110 °F was recorded at Millsboro on July 21, 1930; the all-time record low of −17 °F was recorded at Millsboro on January 17, 1893. The transitional climate of Delaware supports a wide variety of vegetation. In the northern third of the state are found Northeastern coastal forests and mixed oak forests typical of the northeastern United States. In the southern two-thirds of the state are found Middle Atlantic coastal forests. Trap Pond State Park, along with areas in other parts of Sussex County, for example, support
Pennsylvania the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, is a state located in the northeastern and Mid-Atlantic regions of the United States. The Appalachian Mountains run through its middle; the Commonwealth is bordered by Delaware to the southeast, Maryland to the south, West Virginia to the southwest, Ohio to the west, Lake Erie and the Canadian province of Ontario to the northwest, New York to the north, New Jersey to the east. Pennsylvania is the 33rd-largest state by area, the 6th-most populous state according to the most recent official U. S. Census count in 2010, it is the 9th-most densely populated of the 50 states. Pennsylvania's two most populous cities are Philadelphia, Pittsburgh; the state capital and its 10th largest city is Harrisburg. Pennsylvania has 140 miles of waterfront along the Delaware Estuary; the state is one of the 13 original founding states of the United States. Part of Pennsylvania, together with the present State of Delaware, had earlier been organized as the Colony of New Sweden.
It was the second state to ratify the United States Constitution, on December 12, 1787. Independence Hall, where the United States Declaration of Independence and United States Constitution were drafted, is located in the state's largest city of Philadelphia. During the American Civil War, the Battle of Gettysburg was fought in the south central region of the state. Valley Forge near Philadelphia was General Washington's headquarters during the bitter winter of 1777–78. Pennsylvania is 170 miles north to south and 283 miles east to west. Of a total 46,055 square miles, 44,817 square miles are land, 490 square miles are inland waters, 749 square miles are waters in Lake Erie, it is the 33rd-largest state in the United States. Pennsylvania has 51 miles of coastline along Lake Erie and 57 miles of shoreline along the Delaware Estuary. Of the original Thirteen Colonies, Pennsylvania is the only state that does not border the Atlantic Ocean; the boundaries of the state are the Mason–Dixon line to the south, the Twelve-Mile Circle on the Pennsylvania-Delaware border, the Delaware River to the east, 80° 31' W to the west and the 42° N to the north, with the exception of a short segment on the western end, where a triangle extends north to Lake Erie.
Cities include Philadelphia, Reading and Lancaster in the southeast, Pittsburgh in the southwest, the tri-cities of Allentown and Easton in the central east. The northeast includes the former anthracite coal mining cities of Scranton, Wilkes-Barre and Hazleton. Erie is located in the northwest. State College serves the central region while Williamsport serves the commonwealth's north-central region as does Chambersburg the south-central region, with York and the state capital Harrisburg on the Susquehanna River in the east-central region of the Commonwealth and Altoona and Johnstown in the west-central region; the state has five geographical regions, namely the Allegheny Plateau and Valley, Atlantic Coastal Plain and the Erie Plain. New York Ontario Maryland Delaware West Virginia New Jersey Ohio Pennsylvania's diverse topography produces a variety of climates, though the entire state experiences cold winters and humid summers. Straddling two major zones, the majority of the state, with the exception of the southeastern corner, has a humid continental climate.
The southern portion of the state has a humid subtropical climate. The largest city, has some characteristics of the humid subtropical climate that covers much of Delaware and Maryland to the south. Summers are hot and humid. Moving toward the mountainous interior of the state, the winter climate becomes colder, the number of cloudy days increases, snowfall amounts are greater. Western areas of the state locations near Lake Erie, can receive over 100 inches of snowfall annually, the entire state receives plentiful precipitation throughout the year; the state may be subject to severe weather from spring through summer into fall. Tornadoes occur annually in the state, sometimes in large numbers, such as 30 recorded tornadoes in 2011; as of 1600, the tribes living in Pennsylvania were the Algonquian Lenape, the Iroquoian Susquehannock & Petun and the Siouan Monongahela Culture, who may have been the same as a little known tribe called the Calicua, or Cali. Other tribes who entered the region during the colonial era were the Trockwae, Saponi, Nanticoke, Conoy Piscataway, Iroquois Confederacy—possibly among others.
Other tribes, like the Erie, may have once held some land in Pennsylvania, but no longer did so by the year 1600. Both the Dutch and the English claimed both sides of the Delaware River as part of their colonial lands in America; the Dutch were the first to take possession. By June 3, 1631, the Dutch had begun settling the Delmarva Peninsula by establishing the Zwaanendael Colony on the site of present-day Lewes, Delaware. In 1638, Sweden established the New Sweden Colony, in the region of Fort Christina, on the site of present-day Wilmington, Delaware. New Sweden claimed and, for the most part, controlled the lower Delaware River region (parts of present-day Delaware, New Jersey, Pe
New Jersey is a state in the Mid-Atlantic and Northeastern regions of the United States. It is located on a peninsula, bordered on the north and east by the state of New York along the extent of the length of New York City on its western edge. New Jersey is the fourth-smallest state by area but the 11th-most populous, with 9 million residents as of 2017, the most densely populated of the 50 U. S. states. New Jersey lies within the combined statistical areas of New York City and Philadelphia. New Jersey was the second-wealthiest U. S. state by median household income as of 2017. New Jersey was inhabited by Native Americans for more than 2,800 years, with historical tribes such as the Lenape along the coast. In the early 17th century, the Dutch and the Swedes founded the first European settlements in the state; the English seized control of the region, naming it the Province of New Jersey after the largest of the Channel Islands and granting it as a colony to Sir George Carteret and John Berkeley, 1st Baron Berkeley of Stratton.
New Jersey was the site of several decisive battles during the American Revolutionary War in the 18th century. In the 19th century, factories in cities, Paterson, Trenton, Jersey City, Elizabeth helped to drive the Industrial Revolution. New Jersey's geographic location at the center of the Northeast megalopolis, between Boston and New York City to the northeast, Philadelphia and Washington, D. C. to the southwest, fueled its rapid growth through the process of suburbanization in the second half of the 20th century. In the first decades of the 21st century, this suburbanization began reverting with the consolidation of New Jersey's culturally diverse populace toward more urban settings within the state, with towns home to commuter rail stations outpacing the population growth of more automobile-oriented suburbs since 2008. Around 180 million years ago, during the Jurassic Period, New Jersey bordered North Africa; the pressure of the collision between North America and Africa gave rise to the Appalachian Mountains.
Around 18,000 years ago, the Ice Age resulted in glaciers. As the glaciers retreated, they left behind Lake Passaic, as well as many rivers and gorges. New Jersey was settled by Native Americans, with the Lenni-Lenape being dominant at the time of contact. Scheyichbi is the Lenape name for the land, now New Jersey; the Lenape were several autonomous groups that practiced maize agriculture in order to supplement their hunting and gathering in the region surrounding the Delaware River, the lower Hudson River, western Long Island Sound. The Lenape society was divided into matrilinear clans; these clans were organized into three distinct phratries identified by their animal sign: Turtle and Wolf. They first encountered the Dutch in the early 17th century, their primary relationship with the Europeans was through fur trade; the Dutch became the first Europeans to lay claim to lands in New Jersey. The Dutch colony of New Netherland consisted of parts of modern Middle Atlantic states. Although the European principle of land ownership was not recognized by the Lenape, Dutch West India Company policy required its colonists to purchase the land that they settled.
The first to do so was Michiel Pauw who established a patronship called Pavonia in 1630 along the North River which became the Bergen. Peter Minuit's purchase of lands along the Delaware River established the colony of New Sweden; the entire region became a territory of England on June 24, 1664, after an English fleet under the command of Colonel Richard Nicolls sailed into what is now New York Harbor and took control of Fort Amsterdam, annexing the entire province. During the English Civil War, the Channel Island of Jersey remained loyal to the British Crown and gave sanctuary to the King, it was from the Royal Square in Saint Helier that Charles II of England was proclaimed King in 1649, following the execution of his father, Charles I. The North American lands were divided by Charles II, who gave his brother, the Duke of York, the region between New England and Maryland as a proprietary colony. James granted the land between the Hudson River and the Delaware River to two friends who had remained loyal through the English Civil War: Sir George Carteret and Lord Berkeley of Stratton.
The area was named the Province of New Jersey. Since the state's inception, New Jersey has been characterized by religious diversity. New England Congregationalists settled alongside Scots Presbyterians and Dutch Reformed migrants. While the majority of residents lived in towns with individual landholdings of 100 acres, a few rich proprietors owned vast estates. English Quakers and Anglicans owned large landholdings. Unlike Plymouth Colony and other colonies, New Jersey was populated by a secondary wave of immigrants who came from other colonies instead of those who migrated directly from Europe. New Jersey remained agrarian and rural throughout the colonial era, commercial farming developed sporadically; some townships, such as Burlington on the Delaware River and Perth Amboy, emerged as important ports for shipping to New York City and Philadelphia. The colony's fertile lands and tolerant religious policy drew more settlers, New Jersey's population had increased to 120,000 by 1775. Settlement for the first 10 years of English rule took place along Hackensack River and Arthur Kill –
New Castle County, Delaware
New Castle County is the northernmost of the three counties of the U. S. state of Delaware. As of the 2010 census, the population was 538,479, making it the most populous county in Delaware, with just under 60% of the state's population of 897,936 in the same census; the county seat is Wilmington. New Castle County is included in the Philadelphia-Camden-Wilmington, PA-NJ-DE-MD Metropolitan Statistical Area; the county is named after the English city of Newcastle. New Castle County has the highest population and population density of any Delaware county, it is the smallest county in the state by area, it has more people than the other two counties and Sussex, combined. It is the most economically developed of the three. Matt Meyer was elected New Castle County Executive in 2016. New Castle County is home to two minor league sports teams: the Wilmington Blue Rocks and the Delaware Blue Coats which plays in Wilmington, it has a professional auto racing track in New Castle known as Airport Speedway, which races on Saturday nights throughout the summer.
The first permanent European settlement on Delaware soil was Fort Christina, resulting from Peter Minuit's 1638 expedition on the Swedish vessels Fogel Grip and Kalmar Nyckel. The Swedes laid out the town at the site of modern-day Wilmington, they contracted with the Lenape Native Americans for land of Old Cape Henlopen north to Sankikans, inland as far as they desired. However, a dispute ensued between the Dutch, who asserted a prior claim to that land. In 1640, New Sweden was founded a few miles south of Christina. In 1644, Queen Christina appointed Lt. Col. Johan Printz as Governor of New Sweden, she directed boundaries to be set and to reach Cape Henlopen north along the west side of Godyn's Bay, up the South River, past Minquas Kill, to Sankikans. Printz settled as the seat of government and capital of the New Sweden colony. Peter Stuyvesant, Governor of New Netherland, sailed up the South River in 1651, he purchased land from the Lenape. Stuyvesant began to build Fort Casimir. In 1654, Johan Risingh and councilor to the Governor Lt. Col. Printz assumed Printz's duties and began to expel all Dutch from New Sweden.
Fort Casimir surrendered and was renamed Fort Trinity in 1654. The Swedes had complete possession of the west side of the Delaware River. On June 21, 1654, the Lenape met with the Swedes to reaffirm the purchase. Having learned of the fall of Fort Casimir, the Dutch sent Stuyvesant to drive the Swedes from both sides of the river, they allowed only Dutch colonists to settle in the area and on August 31, 1655, the territory was converted back to Fort Casimir. Fort Christina fell on September 15 to the Dutch and New Netherland ruled once again. John Paul Jacquet was appointed governor, making New Amstel the capital of the Dutch-controlled colony; as payment for regaining the territory, the Dutch West India Company conveyed land from the south side of Christina Kill to Bombay Hook, as far west as Minquas land. This land was known as the Colony of The City. On December 22, 1663, the Dutch transferred property rights to the territory along the Delaware River to England. In 1664, the Duke of York, was granted this land by King Charles II.
One of the first acts by the Duke was to order removal of all Dutch from New Amsterdam. In 1672, the town of New Castle was incorporated and English law ordered. However, in 1673, the Dutch attacked the territory. On September 12, 1673, the Dutch established New Amstel in present-day Delaware coterminous with today's New Castle County; the establishment was not stable, it was transferred to the British under the Treaty of Westminster on February 9, 1674. On November 6, 1674, New Amstel was made dependent on New York Colony, was renamed New Castle on November 11, 1674. On September 22, 1676, New Castle County was formally placed under the Duke of York's laws, it gained land from Upland County on November 12, 1678. On June 21, 1680, St. Jones County was carved from New Castle County, it is known today as Delaware. On August 24, 1682, New Castle County, along with the rest of the surrounding land, was transferred from the Colony of New York to the possession of William Penn, who established the Colony of Delaware.
In September 1673, a Dutch council established a court at New Castle with the boundaries defined as north of Steen Kill and south to Bomties Hook. In 1681, a 12-mile arc was drawn to delineate the northern border of New Castle County as it exists. In 1685, the western border was established by King James II. According to the U. S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 494 square miles, of which 426 square miles is land and 68 square miles is water; the boundaries of New Castle County are described in § 102 of the Delaware Code. The county is drained by Brandywine Creek, Christina River, other channels, its eastern edge sits along the Delaware Delaware Bay. Two small exclaves of the county and the state lie across the Delaware River, on its east bank on the New Jersey side, Finns Point adjacent to Pennsville Township, New Jersey, the northern tip of Artificial Island, adjacent to Lower Alloways Creek Township, New Jers
United States Declaration of Independence
The United States Declaration of Independence is the statement adopted by the Second Continental Congress meeting at the Pennsylvania State House in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, on July 4, 1776. The Declaration announced that the Thirteen Colonies at war with the Kingdom of Great Britain would regard themselves as thirteen independent sovereign states, no longer under British rule. With the Declaration, these new states took a collective first step toward forming the United States of America; the declaration was signed by representatives from New Hampshire, Massachusetts Bay, Rhode Island, New York, New Jersey, Maryland, Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia. The Lee Resolution for independence was passed on July 2 with no opposing votes; the Committee of Five had drafted the Declaration to be ready. John Adams, a leader in pushing for independence, had persuaded the committee to select Thomas Jefferson to compose the original draft of the document, which Congress edited to produce the final version.
The Declaration was a formal explanation of why Congress had voted to declare independence from Great Britain, more than a year after the outbreak of the American Revolutionary War. Adams wrote to his wife Abigail, "The Second Day of July 1776, will be the most memorable Epocha, in the History of America" – although Independence Day is celebrated on July 4, the date that the wording of the Declaration of Independence was approved. After ratifying the text on July 4, Congress issued the Declaration of Independence in several forms, it was published as the printed Dunlap broadside, distributed and read to the public. The source copy used for this printing has been lost and may have been a copy in Thomas Jefferson's hand. Jefferson's original draft is preserved at the Library of Congress, complete with changes made by John Adams and Benjamin Franklin, as well as Jefferson's notes of changes made by Congress; the best-known version of the Declaration is a signed copy, displayed at the National Archives in Washington, D.
C. and, popularly regarded as the official document. This engrossed copy was ordered by Congress on July 19 and signed on August 2; the sources and interpretation of the Declaration have been the subject of much scholarly inquiry. The Declaration justified the independence of the United States by listing 27 colonial grievances against King George III and by asserting certain natural and legal rights, including a right of revolution, its original purpose was to announce independence, references to the text of the Declaration were few in the following years. Abraham Lincoln made it the centerpiece of his policies and his rhetoric, as in the Gettysburg Address of 1863. Since it has become a well-known statement on human rights its second sentence: We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life and the pursuit of Happiness; this has been called "one of the best-known sentences in the English language", containing "the most potent and consequential words in American history".
The passage came to represent a moral standard. This view was notably promoted by Lincoln, who considered the Declaration to be the foundation of his political philosophy and argued that it is a statement of principles through which the United States Constitution should be interpreted; the Declaration of Independence inspired many similar documents in other countries, the first being the 1789 Declaration of United Belgian States issued during the Brabant Revolution in the Austrian Netherlands. It served as the primary model for numerous declarations of independence in Europe and Latin America, as well as Africa and Oceania during the first half of the 19th century. Believe me, dear Sir: there is not in the British empire a man who more cordially loves a union with Great Britain than I do. But, by the God that made me, I will cease to exist before I yield to a connection on such terms as the British Parliament propose. By the time that the Declaration of Independence was adopted in July 1776, the Thirteen Colonies and Great Britain had been at war for more than a year.
Relations had been deteriorating between the colonies and the mother country since 1763. Parliament enacted a series of measures to increase revenue from the colonies, such as the Stamp Act of 1765 and the Townshend Acts of 1767. Parliament believed that these acts were a legitimate means of having the colonies pay their fair share of the costs to keep them in the British Empire. Many colonists, had developed a different conception of the empire; the colonies were not directly represented in Parliament, colonists argued that Parliament had no right to levy taxes upon them. This tax dispute was part of a larger divergence between British and American interpretations of the British Constitution and the extent of Parliament's authority in the colonies; the orthodox British view, dating from the Glorious Revolution of 1688, was that Parliament was the supreme authority throughout the empire, so, by definition, anything that Parliament did was constitutional. In the colonies, the idea had developed that the British Constitution recognized certain fundamental rights that no government could violate, not Parliament.
After the Townshend Acts, some essayists began to question whether Parliament had any legitimate jurisdiction in the colonies at all. Anticipating the arrangement of the British Commonwealth, by 1774 American writers such as