Independence Day celebrations, historical significance

CHENANGO COUNTY – The Fourth of July weekend proved to be a time to celebrate and honor the history of the United States. Many people gathered for fireworks, parades, barbecues, races or decided to travel over the long weekend. Such activities are traditions that have been passed down since the Declaration of Independence was adopted on July 4, 1776.

The document was authored by Thomas Jefferson of Virginia with the assistance of John Adams of Massachusetts (later the second President of the United States), Robert R. Livingston of New York, Benjamin Franklin of Pennsylvania, and Roger Sherman of Connecticut.

The Declaration of Independence listed grievances against the King of England, important philosophical sentiments that would help guide the formation of the nation, and severed all ties with the State of Great Britain.

“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness,” states the declaration. “...That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness.”

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