The commemoration of July 4 is one of the most important holidays in the United States. We explain why it is celebrated and what its origin is.
The 4th of July marks one of the most important days in the history of the United States, Independence Day. On this date, families gather to celebrate and thousands of people come out to celebrate. During the day there are parades and at night, fireworks shows. On the other hand, companies share great discounts in their stores, but what is the origin of this celebration? We explain to you.
July 4: why is it celebrated in the USA, origin, meaning and what happened in 1776?
Open conflict between the 13 colonies and Great Britain was already a year old when the colonies convened a Continental Congress in Philadelphia in the summer of 1776. During a session on June 7, efforts began to draft a formal Declaration of Independence.
On June 11, the Continental Congress appointed a five-person committee to draft a declaration of independence for the 13 colonies. The committee consisted of Thomas Jefferson, John Adams, Benjamin Franklin, Robert R. Livingston, and Roger Sherman, with Jefferson writing.
Jefferson drafted the statement between June 11 and June 28, submitting various drafts to Adams and Franklin, who made some changes. Subsequently, the draft was submitted to Congress.
Although Congress officially declared its freedom from Great Britain on July 2, 1776 after unanimously passing a resolution, it was on July 4 that the Second Continental Congress unanimously adopted the Declaration of Independence. However, until August 2 the Declaration was by the members of Congress.
The origin of the 4th of July as a holiday
According to the Library of Congress, in the 1870s, July 4 was the most important secular holiday on the calendar. On June 28, 1870, Congress passed H.R. 2224, establishing July 4 as an unpaid federal holiday, as part of a bill that recognized other holidays such as New Year’s Day and Christmas.
According to James R. Heintze, author of “The Fourth of July Encyclopedia,” this bill did not propose to create any holidays, but simply to recognize those legal holidays in “every state in the Union.” It wasn’t until nearly seven decades later, in 1938, that Congress established July 4 as a paid federal holiday along with Christmas, New Year’s, Memorial Day, Washington’s Birthday, Labor Day, and Thanksgiving.