The Champion

August 2003 , Page 76 

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The pursuit of happiness and the practice of criminal law

By Paul Engh

Read more Informal Opinion columns.

In May 1776, Thomas Jefferson rented a room above Benjamin Graff, Jr.’s store, at Seventh and Market, in Philadelphia. Fliegelman, Declaring Independence, Jefferson, Natural Language and the Culture of Performance, (Stanford University Press 1993) 196. There he sat alone in a Windsor chair; resting on his knees was a portable writing box he designed. David McCullough, John Adams (Simon and Schuster, 2001) 120; Bedini & Silvio, Declaration of Independence Desk (Smithsonian Institution Press, 1981) 6-7. This would be his run at history, his attempt to say everything and “place before mankind the common sense of the subject.” Letter of Thomas Jefferson to Henry Lee, May 8, 1825, Writings of Thomas Jefferson (Jefferson Memorial Association, 1903, Lipscomb, ed.VII), 407.  

The first two paragraphs of the Declaration of Independence have been described as “electrifying,” Paul Johnson, A History of the American People, (Harper Collins, 1988), 135.  

When in the course of human event

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