5 Things You Didn't Know About July 4th
- The Continental Congress declared independence on July 2nd, 1776. In fact, John Adams expected July 2nd to be our national independence day. In a letter to his wife, Abigail Adams, he wrote: 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.
- Thomas Jefferson was not the sole author of the Declaration of Independence. A five-man team - Ben Franklin, Robert Livingston, John Adams, and Roger Sherman - as well as the full Continental Congress, helped to draft and edit.
- The Declaration of Independence was signed by 56 different people over a six-month period. Most of the delegates signed on August 2nd, 1776.
- The Liberty Bell did not ring in American Independence. If fact, the bell received its moniker in the early 19th century - abolitionists used it as a symbol of the antislavery movement.
- Betsy Ross did not sew the first American flag. It is not known who did, but Francis Hopkinson, a Continental Congress delegate, claims to have designed it.
(via The Washington Post)