On this day in 1776, in Philadelphia, the Continental Congress adopted the Declaration of Independence, which proclaims the independence of a new United States of America from Great Britain and its king. The declaration came 442 days after the first shots of the American Revolution were fired at Lexington and Concord in Massachusetts and marked France’s intervention on behalf of the Americans.
On July 2, 1776, the Continental Congress voted to approve a Virginia motion calling for separation Great Britain. The dramatic words of this resolution were added to the closing of the Declaration of Independence. Two days later, on July 4, the declaration was formally adopted by twelve colonies after minor revision. New York, the 13th colony, approved it on July 19. On August 2, the declaration was signed by Congress delegates. The American War for Independence was on, and it would last for five long years.
So enjoy the fireworks show tonight. But don’t forget where it all began – 240 years ago today.