Thomas Jefferson, A Summary View of the Rights of British America (1774)

A summary view of the rights of British America

A Summary View of the Rights of British America: Caused Jefferson's name to be added to a Parliamentary list of names to be proscribed.

This work originated in a paper by Thomas Jefferson entitled "Instructions," which he sent to the Virginia Constitutional Convention. In it he set out his thoughts on government and human rights, using much of the same language that he would use two years later in the Declaration of Independence. The book has been described by one historian as a "landmark in American history." At the Virginia Convention, it was printed as a pamphlet under the title "A Summary View of the Rights of British America."

The pamphlet eventually made its way to England, where it was reprinted several times. This work attracted attention from the English Parliament and earned Jefferson the distinction of being added to a list of names to be proscribed for advocating the colonial cause. Others on the list included John Hancock and Samuel Adams.

Clements Library copy of A Summary View of the Rights of British America