獨立宣言包括三個部分 : 第一部分闡明政治哲學——民主與自由的哲學，內容深刻動人 ; 第二部分列舉若干具體的不平事例，以證明喬治三世破壞了美國的自由 ; 第三部分鄭重宣布獨立，並宣誓支持該項宣言。
我們認為下面這些真理是不言而喻的 : 人人生而平等，造物者賦予他們若干不可剝奪的權利，其中包括生命權、自由權和追求幸福的權利。為了保障這些權利，人類才在他們之間建立政府，而政府之正當權力，是經被治理者的同意而產生的。當任何形式的政府對這些目標具破壞作用時，人民便有權力改變或廢除它，以建立一個新的政府 ;其賴以奠基的原則，其組織權力的方式，務使人民認為唯有這樣才最可能獲得他們的安全和幸福。為了慎重起見，成立多年的政府，是不應當由於輕微和短暫的原因而予以變更的。過去的一切經驗也都說明，任何苦難，只要是尚能忍受，人類都寧願容忍，而無意為了本身的權益便廢除他們久已習慣了的政府。但是，當追逐同一目標的一連串濫用職權和強取豪奪發生，證明政府企圖把人民置於專制統治之下時，那麼人民就有權利，也有義務推翻這個政府，並為他們未來的安全建立新的保障——這就是這些殖民地過去逆來順受的情況，也是它們現在不得不改變以前政府制度的原因。當今大不列顛國王的歷史，是接連不斷的傷天害理和強取豪奪的歷史，這些暴行的唯一目標，就是想在這些州建立專制的暴政。為了證明所言屬實，現把下列事實向公正的世界宣布：
他同某些人勾結起來，把我們置於一種不適合我們的體制且不為我們的法律所承認的管轄之下 ; 他還批准那些人炮製的各種偽法案來達到以下目的 :
他在我們中間煽動內亂，並且竭力挑唆那些殘酷無情、沒有開化的印第安人來殺掠我們追撞的居民 ; 而眾所周知，印第安人的作戰規律是不分男女老幼，一律格殺勿論的。
我們不是沒有顧念我們英國的弟兄。我們時常提醒他們，他們的立法機關企圖把無理的管轄權橫加到我們的頭上。我們也曾把我們移民來這裏和在這裏定居的情形告訴他們。我們曾經向他們天生的正義感和雅量呼籲，我們懇求他們念在同種同宗的份上，棄絕這些掠奪行為，以免影響彼此的關係和往來。但是他們對於這種正義和血緣的呼聲，也同樣充耳不聞。因此，我們實在不得不宣布和他們脫離，並且以對待世界上其他民族一樣的態度對待他們 : 和我們作戰，就是敵人;和我們和好，就是朋友。
因此，我們，在大陸會議下集會的美利堅合眾國代表，以各殖民地善良人民的名義，並經他們授權，向全世界最崇高的正義呼籲，說明我們的嚴正意向，同時鄭重宣布; 這些聯合一致的殖民地從此是自由和獨立的國家，並且按其權利也必須是自由和獨立的國家，它們取消一切對英國王室效忠的義務，它們和大不列顛國家之間的一切政治關係從此全部斷絕，而且必須斷絕 ; 作為自由獨立的國家，它們完全有權宣戰、締和、結盟、通商和採取獨立國家有權採取的一切行動。為了支持這篇宣言，我們堅決信賴上帝的庇佑，以我們的生命、我們的財產和我們神聖的名譽，彼此宣誓。
Declaration of Independence
The Unanimous Declaration of the Thirteen United States of America
When, in the course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bonds which have connected them with another, and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the laws of nature and of nature's God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.
We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. That to secure these rights, governments are instituted among men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed. That whenever any form of government becomes destructive to these ends, it is the right of the people to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their safety and happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shown that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such government, and to provide new guards for their future security. --Such has been the patient sufferance of these colonies; and such is now the necessity which constrains them to alter their former systems of government. The history of the present King of Great Britain is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations, all having in direct object the establishment of an absolute tyranny over these states. To prove this, let facts be submitted to a candid world.
He has refused his assent to laws, the most wholesome and necessary for the public good.
He has forbidden his governors to pass laws of immediate and pressing importance, unless suspended in their operation till his assent should be obtained; and when so suspended, he has utterly neglected to attend to them.
He has refused to pass other laws for the accommodation of large districts of people, unless those people would relinquish the right of representation in the legislature, a right inestimable to them and formidable to tyrants only.
He has called together legislative bodies at places unusual, uncomfortable, and distant from the depository of their public records, for the sole purpose of fatiguing them into compliance with his measures.
He has dissolved representative houses repeatedly, for opposing with manly firmness his invasions on the rights of the people.
He has refused for a long time, after such dissolutions, to cause others to be elected; whereby the legislative powers, incapable of annihilation, have returned to the people at large for their exercise; the state remaining in the meantime exposed to all the dangers of invasion from without, and convulsions within.
He has endeavored to prevent the population of these states; for that purpose obstructing the laws for naturalization of foreigners; refusing to pass others to encourage their migration hither, and raising the conditions of new appropriations of lands.
He has obstructed the administration of justice, by refusing his assent to laws for establishing judiciary powers.
He has made judges dependent on his will alone, for the tenure of their offices, and the amount and payment of their salaries.
He has erected a multitude of new offices, and sent hither swarms of officers to harass our people, and eat out their substance.
He has kept among us, in times of peace, standing armies without the consent of our legislature.
He has affected to render the military independent of and superior to civil power.
He has combined with others to subject us to a jurisdiction foreign to our constitution, and unacknowledged by our laws; giving his assent to their acts of pretended legislation:
For quartering large bodies of armed troops among us:
For protecting them, by mock trial, from punishment for any murders which they should commit on the inhabitants of these states:
For cutting off our trade with all parts of the world:
For imposing taxes on us without our consent:
For depriving us in many cases, of the benefits of trial by jury:
For transporting us beyond seas to be tried for pretended offenses:
For abolishing the free system of English laws in a neighboring province, establishing therein an arbitrary government, and enlarging its boundaries so as to render it at once an example and fit instrument for introducing the same absolute rule in these colonies:
For taking away our charters, abolishing our most valuable laws, and altering fundamentally the forms of our governments:
For suspending our own legislatures, and declaring themselves invested with power to legislate for us in all cases whatsoever.
He has abdicated government here, by declaring us out of his protection and waging war against us.
He has plundered our seas, ravaged our coasts, burned our towns, and destroyed the lives of our people.
He is at this time transporting large armies of foreign mercenaries to complete the works of death, desolation and tyranny, already begun with circumstances of cruelty and perfidy scarcely paralleled in the most barbarous ages, and totally unworth the head of a civilized nation.
He has constrained our fellow citizens taken captive on the high seas to bear arms against their country, to become the executioners of their friends and brethren, or to fall themselves by their hands.
He has excited domestic insurrections amongst us, and has endeavored to bring on the inhabitants of our frontiers, the merciless Indian savages, whose known rule of warfare, is undistinguished destruction of all ages, sexes and conditions.
In every stage of these oppressions we have petitioned for redress in the most humble terms: our repeated petitions have been answered only by repeated injury. A prince, whose character is thus marked by every act which may define a tyrant, is unfit to be the ruler of a free people.
Nor have we been wanting in attention to our British brethren. We have warned them from time to time of attempts by their legislature to extend an unwarrantable jurisdiction over us. We have reminded them of the circumstances of our emigration and settlement here. We have appealed to their native justice and magnanimity, and we have conjured them by the ties of our common kindred to disavow these usurpations, which, would inevitably interrupt our connections and correspondence. We must, therefore, acquiesce in the necessity, which denounces our separation, and hold them, as we hold the rest of mankind, enemies in war, in peace friends.