In a June 7, 1776 meeting of the Pennsylvania State House, Richard Henry Lee spoke about breaking the allegiance between the 13 colonies and Great Britain. Following his suggestion, the drafting of the Declaration of Independence began.
Members of the committee designated to draft the Declaration included John Adams, Roger Sherman, Benjamin Franklin, Robert Livingston, and Thomas Jefferson, with the work of drafting the document falling on Jefferson.
The conflict between England and the colonies was about a year old when the 13 colonies officially claimed their independence, late on the afternoon of July 4. Nine states voted in favor of the declaration. Pennsylvania and South Carolina voted no, Delaware was undecided, and New York abstained.
It was John Hancock, who served as president of the Continental Congress, who lent his now famous signature to the document. The original document is on file today at the National Archives, in Washington D.C.
Celebrating the Fourth
The signing of the Declaration of Independence is the event that Americans celebrate each year with festivities and fireworks. Every year since 1776, this day is looked at as the birth of American independence. There are fireworks, parades, and concerts in local cities across the U.S. The day is also celebrated with pool parties, barbecues and other favorite summer activities.
While the holiday has been celebrated annually since the event, it didn’t become a federal holiday until 1870. It remains an important national holiday to this day, and serves as an important patriotic event.
Wishing You a Happy Independence Day
RampNow would like to take a moment and wish you a happy Independence Day. We encourage you to take a moment to think about the brave men and women who fought all those years ago to make the U.S. a free nation. And find a way to celebrate with family and friends!