Independence Day, JULY 2 (yes, the second!), 1776

Randy Black asks: "Why DO we celebrate July 4?

The momentous decision of the Continental Congress to sever its ties to Great Britain came on July 2, 1776, which is the date that John Adams thought should be celebrated by future generations. The Declaration of Independence, drafted mostly by Thomas Jefferson, and edited by his colleagues in the Continental Congress, was adopted 2 days later.

We see below two close-up views of a resolution, adopted July 2, 1776, in which the Continental Congress affirmed their independence from Great Britain. The words of the resolution, originally proposed by Virginia delegate Richard Henry Lee, are echoed in the Declaration of Independence.

The resolution of July 2, 1776

The lower part of the document (below) lists the 12 colonies that voted "aye" for independence on July 2, 1776. The 13th colony, New York, abstained, awaiting approval from the newly elected New York Convention.


Tin Briwn writes. "The date of formal Declaration of Independence, not of any prior decision. On my office wall in Fort de France, Martinique, French West Indies hung a copy of an order issued to William Bingham, after whom Binghampton, NY is named. In it Bingham was made the official representative of the rebelling colonies in Martinique and instructed to receive from French authorities there and send on to the rebels impressive quantities of arms, munitions and other war materials France had already agreed to provide to them to fight their war. Since Bingham's orders were dated precisely one year to the day before the Declaration of Independence, on July 4, 1775, clearly the decision to separate from Great Britain and seek independence by force of arms had been made well before that". RH: By a small group of conspirators conniving with the French absolute monarchy.

Ronald Hilton -