On July 4, America celebrates Independence Day. Contrary to popular belief, it marked the signing of the Declaration of Independence. The Constitution was ratified over a decade later.
That was then…
Like many holidays, the sentiment behind Independence Day sometimes seems overtaken by commercialization and marketing. We see “4th of July” sales, and even references to “the holiday.” Then there are the picnics, ball games, fireworks… things which actually start to sound familiar:
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 Shews, Games, Sports, Guns, Bells, Bonfires and Illuminations [fireworks] from one End of this Continent to the other from this Time forward forever more.Letter from John Adams to Abigail Adams, 3 July 1776
John Adams was one of America’s founding fathers. Clearly he didn’t think all of this merry-making distracted from the solemnity of the holiday. Quite the contrary, it emphasized what a very big deal America’s independence was – and continues to be!Continue reading Happy Birthday America!