How Philadelphia Made Independence Day Possible

As people gather throughout the United States to celebrate the birth of American independence, Safeguard Self Storage wants to reflect on the events that led up to this great day, and the city where it all started. Whether you're grilling out with family or enjoying the local fireworks show, let us take some time to remember the day the U.S. declared independence from Great Britain – and why Philadelphia, PA is one very important city.

The Birth of a Nation

The Revolutionary War started in April 1775, at which time few colonists wanted complete independence from Great Britain. Any colonist who wanted complete independence where considered radical. By mid-1776, many colonists favored independence due to growing hostility. The Second Continental Congress met on June 7 at the Pennsylvania State House in Philadelphia and Richard Henry Lee made a motion calling for independence. While the consideration of Lee's resolution was postponed on June 11, a five-man committee was appointed to draft a formal statement declaring independence from Great Britain. This team consisted of: Thomas Jefferson, John Adams, Roger Sherman, Benjamin Franklin and Robert. R. Livingston.

The Declaration of Independence

Lee's resolution of independence was voted in by a near-unanimous vote on July 2. The Second Continental Congress formally adopted the Declaration of Independence on July 4, which was written mainly by Jefferson. Even though the vote for independence took place on July 2, the birth of American independence was celebrated on the 4th of July. John Adams believed that the birth American independence should be celebrated on July 2, and even declined invitations to attend July 4th events as protest.

Copies of the Declaration of Independence were distributed on July 5, and The Pennsylvania Evening Post was the first newspaper to print the document on July 6. The first public readings of the Declaration were held on July 8 in Philadelphia's Independence Square – accompanied by band music and the ringing of the bells.

Early Celebrations of Independence Day

As the Declaration of Independence spread across the country, people celebrated with bonfires, firing of canons and muskets, and concerts. The first annual celebration of independence took place in Philadelphia on July 4, 1777; they adjourned Congress and celebrated with bells, fireworks and bonfires. These celebrations eventually spread throughout the country, and observations became more common when the War of 1812 ended. In 1781, Massachusetts became the first state to mark July 4th an official state holiday. Congress made July 4th a federal holiday in 1870; this was expanded in 1941 to be a paid holiday for all federal employees. 

Safeguard Celebrates Independence

While the political importance may have declined since the birth of Independence Day, this national holiday remains an important symbol of patriotism. As you fire up the grill this holiday and gather with friends and family, it's important to know what you're celebrating. When the fireworks die down and the parade route ends, remember that Safeguard Self Storage offers security, stability and independence from clutter all year. Celebrate your individual independence by using self storage to serve your needs. Find a storage facility near you and get ready to celebrate year-round.

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