The first motion in the Continental Congress for independence was made on June 4, 1776. After hard debate, the Congress voted unanimously, but secretly, for independence from Britain on July 2. The Congress reworked the text of the Declaration until July 4, when the 12 colonies voted for adoption and released a copy signed only by John Hancock, President of the Congress, to the printers.
John Adams the unofficial whip of the independence-minded, wrote to his wife Abigail on July 3, 1776:
- The second day of July, 1776, will be the most memorable epoch in the history of America. I am apt to believe that it will be celebrated by succeeding generations as the great anniversary festival. It ought to be commemorated as the day of deliverance, by solemn acts of devotion to God Almighty. It ought to be solemnized with pomp and parade, with shows, games, sports, guns, bells, bonfires, and illuminations, from one end of this continent to the other, from this time forward forever more.
He forgot to mention beers, bbq’s, baseball games and fireworks – but otherwise he pretty much nailed it
Also, a song for today: Independence Day by Ani (click here)