On July 2nd, the Continental Congress voted to approve Virginia's Resolution that These Colonies are and of right ought to be Free and Independent states. Congress spent the next two days editing the text of the final document which was sent to John Dunlop, a Philadelphia Printer. 200 copies were printed. 26 survive today. The delegates actually signed it on August 2, 1776 in the Pennsylvania State House, perhaps not quite as dramatically as the story depicted in the Musical 1776.
Reading, July 8, 1776
Colonel John Nixon read the document outside of Independence Hall.
Reading, July 9, 1776
The next day a copy of the was delivered to George Washington's headquarters at One Broadway. At 6pm that evening Washington ordered several of the city brigades to gather on the Common for a public reading of the declaration. “The General hopes this important event will serve as fresh incentive to every officer and soldier to act with fidelity and courage as knowing that now the peace and safety of his country depends (under God) solely on the success of our arms.”
Alexander Hamilton,He became George Washington’s aide and secretary and was there in "the Fields", now City Hall Park, when the Declaration of Independence was read for the first time in New York on July 9, 1776.