Continental Congress

convention of delegates that became the governing body of the United States


In 1775, the Second Continental Congress convened after the American Revolutionary War (1775-83) had already begun. In 1776, it took the momentous step of declaring America's independence from Britain.

They meet three times from 1174-1789.

On July 8, 1775 they tried again for peace by sending the Olive Branch Petition to the King of Britain. On July 4, 1776 they issued the Declaration of Independence declaring the United States as an independent country from Britain.

he Second Congress functioned as a de facto national government at the outset of the Revolutionary War by raising armies, directing strategy, appointing diplomats, and writing petitions such as the Declaration of the Causes and Necessity of Taking Up Arms and the Olive Branch Petition.