Because we are working people who have to get up early, we will celebrate the Fourth of July at our lake cottage tonight. That’s ok, because the Declaration of Independence wasn’t actually ratified on the 4th anyway, but on the 2nd.
It was my favorite founding father, John Adams, whose idea it was that we should celebrate with fireworks. In a letter to his wife, Abigail, he wrote:
But the Day is past. 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 commemorated, as the Day of Deliverance by solemn Acts of Devotion to God Almighty. 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.
We will all take turns reading the Declaration of Independence while our neighbors arrange for a spectacular private fireworks display.
It’s a day to celebrate.