Saturday, July 2, 2011

Independence Day

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. - Thomas Jefferson (1743–1826)

* On June 7, 1776, Richard Henry Lee introduced a resolution urging the Continental Congress to declare independence from Britain.

* On June 11, 1776, it was decided that a small group of men from the Continental Congress would begin to work on a Declaration of Independence. The group of men consisted of Thomas Jefferson, John Adams, Benjamin Franklin, Roger Sherman, and Robert R. Livingston. Thomas Jefferson was assigned the task of actually writing the document.

* On June 28, 1776 a copy of the committee's draft of the Declaration of Independence was presented to the entire Continental Congress.

* July 2, 1776 is the day the Continental Congress actually voted for independence, not July 4. John Adams even remarked in his notes that July 2 would be remembered in American history forever with celebrations and fireworks.

* July 4, 1776 is the date printed on the final written form of the Declaration of Independence, and therefore became the "official" Independence Day of America.

* John Hancock is the only person who actually signed the Declaration of Independence on July 4, 1776. He most likely signed it because he was the president of the Continental Congress. Most of the other men signed it August 2, 1776, and some signed it even later than that.

So, while you are enjoying the hot dogs and hamburgers, spending time at the lake or by the pool, and watching the pretty displays of fireworks this 4th of July, please take a few minutes to reflect upon the reason we celebrate in the first place. If you know anyone who currently serves in the U.S. Military, or has served in the past, make sure you let them know they are appreciated. Thank God that you live in a free country, because many people around the world cannot say the same.

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