Trumbull’s “Declaration of Independence” painting was commissioned by the Senate in 1817 and purchased in 1819. Today it is exhibited in the United States Capitol Rotunda in the country’s capital. The painting is oil on canvas and its dimensions are 18’ x 12’.
The painting is not meant to depict the signing of the Declaration of Independence but the committee presenting a draft to Congress. It shows 42 of the 56 signers with John Hancock presiding the session as President of the Continental Congress. Hancock is depicted as the man seated at the table in the foreground. Standing next to him at the same side of the table is Charles Thomson from Philadelphia, who was the Secretary of the Continental Congress.
John Trumbull (1756-1843) served in the Revolutionary War as a soldier working directly with George Washington. The painting is also portrayed in the $2 bill.
“Declaration of Independence” by John Trumbull
Thomas Jefferson lays the Declaration of Independence on a table before John Hancock, president of the Second Continental Congress.
Trumbull’s painting in US$2 bill