Since the signing of the Declaration of Independence, our rights as citizens of the United States have been debated, contested, amended, and documented. The Bill of Rights, the first 10 amendments to the Constitution, established our basic civil rights. Later amendments and court decisions have continued the process of defining our human and civil rights.
Documents in the National Archives give voice to our national struggle for personal rights and freedoms. From the Emancipation Proclamation to the five cases that comprised Brown v. Board of Education, this exhibit features a sampling of documents from all regions of the National Archives.