Like many holidays, the true meaning of Independence Day unfortunately seems to be forgotten by a lot of us. Of course the 4th of July is a day to celebrate… but do we really know what we’re celebrating? The real meaning of this day is profound but sadly goes unnoticed, especially by young people. We have to remember what this holiday is about instead of allowing it to be obscured by parties, drinking and fireworks.
In essence, this holiday is our country’s birthday and indeed deserves a celebration! But how much do really know about the country we live in? On July 4th, 1776 the Declaration of Independence was adopted and signed, which gave us independence from Great Britain. Before the Declaration was signed the United States consisted only of thirteen colonies and was under the rule of King George III. The colonies grew tired of paying taxes to Great Britain and having no say in what went on in the English Parliament. In 1774, they sent delegates to Philadelphia, Pennsylvania to form the First Continental Congress which continually tried to resolve differences with England without having to formally declare war.
After a considerable period of time, their efforts proved to be hopeless and a committee lead by Thomas Jefferson was formed to compose the formal Declaration of Independence. To make the document official, it was signed by the president of the Continental Congress, John Hancock.
The first Independence Day celebration took place a year after the document was signed, on July 4th, 1777 and has been proudly celebrated by Americans ever since. The history of our country is so rich, so interesting and so meaningful. Wave your Flags high this year to celebrate our country’s birth!