by Dr. Troy Kickler
Senior Fellow and Managing Director, North Carolina History Curriculum Project
North Carolina played an important role in the formation of the United States. On July 4, 1776, the Continental Congress approved the Declaration of Independence. It was later signed on August 2. There were fifty-six signatories. Some states, such as Rhode Island, had two signers, and others, such as Pennsylvania, had up to nine. Three signers were from North Carolina: Joseph Hewes, William Hooper, and John Penn.