By Doyne Phillips, Managing Editor for Southern Writers Magazine
"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” These words were written by John Adams to his wife Abigail. Adams wrote concerning the day the Continental Congress passed the decision to a legal separation of the Thirteen Colonies from Great Britain.
John Adam’s belief of what the celebration should be has come to pass. Whether it occurred due to the traditions of our land or due to his suggestion remains to be determined. The solemn acts of devotion, the pomp and parade and every imaginable form of entertainment celebrate the day. Two hundred and thirty-seven years later John Adams may be amazed to find his vision of the celebration has come to pass and even more amazed at the date it occurs.
Independence Day is celebrated on the day the Declaration of Independence was signed and dated July 4th. The written document finalizing the action taken by the Continental Congress, not the act itself, determined the date of celebration. It solidified the act and the date and brought to pass a nation celebrating one of the greatest events in history on this date. From Southern Writers Magazine, Happy Fourth of July, 2013!