2 July 1776 -- Independence Day
On this date in 1776, the great rebel, John Adams, wrote to his wife back home in Massachusetts that, finally, the Congress had adopted a resolution establishing the independency of the former colonies from Great Britain. He believed that henceforth the 2nd day of July would be celebrated annually as our holiday of liberation.
Two days later, the Congress approved the language of the Declaration of Independence, which was a statment to the world justifying the action taken by the Congress on July 2nd. The Declaration included the text of the 2nd of July resolution in its concluding paragraph.
Of course, the date of the Declaration, July 4th, rather than the July 2nd date of the Resolution, has come to be the date of the celebration of our Independence. The observation of the 4th of July began as early the first anniversary of independence in 1777. But we should remember that, without the July 2nd Resolution, there could not have been a July 4th Declaration.
IN CONGRESS, July 2, 1776.
The unanimous Resolution of the thirteen united
States of America
Resolved, That these United Colonies are, and of Right ought to be Free and Independent States; that they are Absolved from all Allegiance to the British Crown, and that all political connection between them and the State of Great Britain, is and ought to be totally dissolved; and that as Free and Independent States, they have full Power to levy War, conclude Peace, contract Alliances, establish Commerce, and to do all other Acts and Things which Independent States may of right do.