“Liberty is the right to choose. Freedom is the result of the right choice.” - Anon
Sunday, July 4th, marks the 234th anniversary of America's independence from Great Britain. America's independence was declared on July 2nd by the Continental Congress and adopted on July 4th in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The first Independence Day celebration took place the following year on July 4, 1777. By the early 1800's the traditions of parades, picnics, barbecues and fireworks became the way to celebrate.
Did you know??????
- The major objection to being ruled by Britain was taxation without representation. The colonists had no say in the decisions of English Parliament.
- In May, 1776, after nearly a year of trying to resolve their differences with England, the colonies sent delegates to the Second Continental Congress. Finally, in June, admitting that their efforts were hopeless; a committee was formed to compose the formal Declaration of Independence. Headed by Thomas Jefferson, the committee also included John Adams, Benjamin Franklin, Philip Livingston and Roger Sherman. On June 28, 1776, Thomas Jefferson presented the first draft of the declaration to Congress.
- Only 2 people signed the Declaration on July 4, 1776. Most signed it in August of that year and the last one didn't sign it until 1781.
- While the British were our adversary back then, the United Kingdom is our 6th leading trade partner today.
- Ben Franklin had wanted the turkey to be the national animal, but was out voted by Adams and Jefferson who chose the bald eagle.
- One US President was born on the 4th of July (Coolidge) and three died on that date (Adams, Jefferson and Monroe).
- The names of the signers were withheld from public for more than 6 months because they could have been put to death for treason.
- The first Independence Day celebration west of the Mississippi occurred at Independence Creek and was celebrated by Lewis and Clark in 1805.
- There were 27 grievances listed against King George III in the Declaration of Independence.
- There is no record as to why the colors of red, white and blue were chosen for the flag.
- Thomas Jefferson, the primary author of the Declaration went on to serve as Governor of Virginia, Secretary of State, Vice President and President.
“Let every nation know, whether it wishes us well or ill, we shall pay any price, bear any burden, meet any hardship, support any friend, oppose any foe, to assure the survival and success of liberty.” John F. Kennedy