David Barton made a recent television appearance where he spoke about America’s Birthday — July 4th . In that appearance, he referenced Thomas Jefferson several times. Did you know that in addition to being our nation’s third President, Jefferson was also the draftsman of the Declaration of Independence?

Do you want to know more about Thomas Jefferson? Check out The Jefferson Lies and start exploring the life of this influential American! Below are a few excerpts from The Jefferson Lies relating to the Declaration of Independence.

When it was suggested that he had based the Declaration on the writings of other philosophers, he responded, “[W]hether I had gathered my ideas from reading or reflection I do not know. I know only that I turned to neither book nor pamphlet while writing it.” In fact, he specifically asserted that the Declaration of Independence was “an expression of the American mind” rather than a lexicon of European ideas, and even proclaimed that “the comparisons of our governments with those of Europe is like a comparison of heaven and hell.”

-Excerpt from: “Lie #2: Thomas Jefferson Founded a Secular University.”

In 1776, while serving in the Continental Congress, Jefferson was placed on a committee of five to draft the Declaration of Independence. He was the principal author of that document, and it incorporated four explicit, open acknowledgments of God, some made by his own hand and some added by Congress. That document was actually a dual declaration: a declaration of independence from Great Britain and a declaration of dependence on God.

On July 4, 1776, Jefferson was placed on a committee of three to draft an official seal for the new American government. His own recommendation included the Bible account of “The children of Israel in the wilderness, led by a cloud by day, and a pillar of fire by night.” (He certainly could have proposed a solely secular seal, but did not.)

-Excerpt from: “Lie #5: Thomas Jefferson Advocated a Secular Public Square through the Separation of Church and State.”