On July 4, 1776 American colonies declared Independence from Great Britain through the signing of the Declaration of Independence. Here are some interesting facts about this federal holiday:
Independence Day as a federal holiday
Although the Declaration of Independence was signed on July 4, 1776, it wasn’t until June 28, 1870 that it became a federal holiday. Before this time Independence Day was observed, written on calendars and celebrated but not on National scale.
July 4th was first celebrated in Philadelphia
According to American Memory and Letters of Delegates to Congress: Volume 7 May 1, 1777 – September 18, 1777, John Adams wrote a letter to his wife Abigail Adams, describing the events that happened on July 4, 1777:
“My dear Daughter Philadelphia, July 5th, 1777 Yesterday, being the anniversary of American Independence, was celebrated here with a festivity and ceremony becoming the occasion. “
John Adams celebrated July 2nd as the birth of United States
July 2nd marks the date when the Continental Congress voted unanimously for Independence, but was formally accepted on July 4th. According to the History channel, John Adams protested the date and was even turning down invitations to July 4th celebrations.
John Adams and Thomas Jefferson die on July 4
July 4, 1826 is the date of death of both former American presidents. According to History, they both died within hours from each other.
Summer of 1776 King George III mock funeral
Before the signing of the Declaration of the Independence, the colonies were celebrating the birth of King George III with annual festivities. After the Independence from Great Britain, the colonies were mocking the funeral of King George III as a symbolic act of freedom from the British monarchy.
Nowadays, July 4th is celebrated with fireworks, concerts, barbeques, vacations and family reunions. Today America stands free and we should strive to keep it that way!
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