Thursday, July 02, 2009

Happy Independence Day!

The second day of July, 1776, will be the most memorable epocha in the history of America. I am apt to believe 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 forevermore.
According to David McCullough's John Adams, which I am slowly plowing through, Adams, who was a diary freak, wrote nothing on July 4 of that year. Jefferson wrote only about the temperature and a shopping trip to buy ladies' gloves. So there is reason to believe that nothing at all happened on July 4. Later in life, though, both Adams and Jefferson would swear up and down that it had all happened on the fourth. And, of course, they both died on the fourth, 1826, within hours of one another.


Bill Doughty said...

Thought you might enjoy a perspective of 1776 on my blog about the Navy's professional reading program:

Navy Reads


Tom.... said...

If I recall, it was more like July 2 when the delegates voted and it wasn't officially signed until much later than that August 2, according to the National Archives website. The book Bill Doughty refers to has is fascinating account of a guy who should have been the Father of Our Country, John Adams, without whose determination and skill in negotiations we would most likely never have severed ties with Britian. It is indeed on of history's greatest stories, that an upstart group of dissidents could take on the greatest power in the world and win. It is as much a testament to the will of these men and women as it is a statement of how a great power can give up on a fight due to loss of will. Lessons we must keep in mind as we continue presence in Iraq and now Afghanistan to a much larger degree.
Nice piece here from Mr. Doughty. I am adding him to my bookmarks.
Tom Anselm