During the American Revolution, the legal separation of the 13 colonies from Great Britain in 1776 actually occurred on July 2nd, when the Second Continental Congress voted to approve a resolution of independence. The resolution, proposed in June of 1776 by Richard Henry Lee of Virginia, declared the United States independent from Great Britain's rule.
After voting for independence, Congress turned its attention to the Declaration of Independence, a statement explaining this decision, which had been prepared by a Committee of Five, with Thomas Jefferson as its principal author. Congress debated and revised the wording of the Declaration, finally approving it two days later on July 4th.
A day earlier, John Adams had written to his wife Abigail: "The second day of July, 1776, will be the most memorable epoch in the history of America. 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 shows, games, sports, guns, bells, bonfires, and illuminations, from one end of this continent to the other, from this time forward forever more."
Adams's prediction was off by two days. From the outset, Americans celebrated independence on July 4th, the date shown on the much-publicized Declaration of Independence, rather than on July 2nd, the date the resolution of independence was approved in a closed session of Congress.
Coincidentally, both John Adams and Thomas Jefferson, the only signers of the Declaration of Independence later to serve as Presidents of the United States, died on the same day: July 4th, 1826, which was the 50th anniversary of the Declaration. Although not a signer of the Declaration of Independence, James Monroe, another Founding Father who was elected as President, also died on July 4th, 1831. He was the third President in a row who died on the anniversary of independence. Calvin Coolidge, the 30th President, was born on July 4th, 1872; so far he is the only U.S. President to have been born on Independence Day.
Every year, Scottsdale hosts a 4th of July celebration at Westworld. This is only two miles from our house; which is 400 feet higher. This gives us a fantastic view of the fireworks from our patio.
We video taped the entire 15 minute display, but we would like to show you the final 5 minutes, including the finale. Travel on over to the "Video Page" and enjoy the fireworks with some patriotic music. We could also see fireworks displays from at least five other cities. See how many you can count.
Next year we are thinking of hosting a big party, so send us a reservation request. We would be glad to have you!