America's Founding Documents
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These three documents, known collectively as the Charters of Freedom, have secured the rights of the American people for more than two and a quarter centuries and are considered instrumental to the founding and philosophy of the United States.
Declaration of Independence
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The Declaration of Independence expresses the ideals on which the United States was founded and the reasons for separation from Great Britain.
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The Constitution defines the framework of the Federal Government of the United States.
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Bill of Rights
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The Bill of Rights is the first 10 amendments to the Constitution. It defines citizens’ and states’ rights in relation to the Government.
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Charters of Freedom Book
This spectacular book written by Alice Kamps, Curator at the National Archives, showcases the National Archives' renovated Rotunda, the newly re-encased Charters of Freedom, and more. 
Historic Facsimiles
Elegant facsimiles on parchment paper are perfect for educational purposes or to decorate your home or office.
Framed Documents
For the patriot and lover of our nation's history, get our founding documents framed and in your home.
Visit the Charters of Freedom
The Rotunda for the Charters of Freedom
Located on the upper level of the National Archives museum, the Rotunda for the Charters of Freedom is the permanent home of the original Declaration of Independence, Constitution of the United States, and Bill of Rights.
Designed by architect John Russell Pope as a shrine to American democracy, the ornate Rotunda with its soaring domed ceiling also features two murals by Barry Faulkner, depicting fictional scenes of the “presentations” of the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution.
Explore the Founders Online
Founders Online
Through Founders Online, you can read and search through thousands of documents and records to and from George Washington, Benjamin Franklin, Alexander Hamilton, John Adams, Thomas Jefferson, and James Madison and see firsthand the growth of democracy and the birth of the Republic.  Their letters and journals are a kind of "first draft" of the Charters of Freedom.
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Sign the Declaration or Constitution
The Faulkner Murals
Visit the Founding Documents
View Other Milestone Documents
Milestone Documents
Milestone documents are primary source documents that highlight pivotal moments in the course of American history or government. They are some of the most-viewed and sought-out documents in the holdings of the National Archives.
This page was last reviewed on February 17, 2022.
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Founding Documents
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Declaration of Independence
Constitution of the United States
Bill of Rights
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