Happy Second of July! On July 2, 1776, the United States of America became independent from Great Britain when the Continental
Congress approved a resolution declaring That these United Colonies are, and of right ought to be, free and independent States,
that they are absolved from all allegiance to the British Crown, and that all political connection between them and the State of
Great Britain is, and ought to be, totally dissolved. The resolution had been introduced almost a month earlier by
Richard Henry Lee, a delegate from Virginia. When the vote was held on July 2, twelve of the colonies voted in favor; New York abstained. John Adams expected that the Second Day of July 1776, will be the most memorable Epocha, 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
solemnized with Pomp and Parade, with Shews, Games, Sports, Guns, Bells, Bonfires and Illuminations from one End of this Continent
to the other from this Time forward forever more.