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Happy 4th of July: Did you know that the first copies of the Declaration of Independence were printed by an Irishman named John Dunlap who hailed from Meetinghouse Street, Strabane in County Tyrone? He began learning his trade when he went to work for his Uncle at the tender age of ten in Philadelphia PA.
On the evening of July fourth 1776, John Hancock ordered Dunlap to print broadside copies of the Declaration of Independence. Approximately two hundred copies were printed and became known as the Dunlap broadsides. He continued to be successful in the printing trade founding the 'Pennsylvania Packet', which is credited as being the first daily newspaper in the US but made most of his money on real estate. With his financial success he was able to retire at age forty eight. Unfortunately he became somewhat of a drinker in what should have been his golden years. He died of apoplexy on November 27th 1812 in Christ Church Philadelphia.
In 1965 a plaque was erected in Meetinghouse Street, Strabane, to commemorate the site of his birth.
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