Fourth of July, Independence Day, barbecues and fireworks… They are synonymous with the day we sport red, white and blue to commemorate our nation’s independence. In honor of the upcoming patriotic celebrations this week, we’re sharing profiles to of the key players who made notable contributions to the official day the Declaration of Independence was adopted by Congress in 1776.
John Adams – He’s best known as the second president of the United States, but Adams was one of the main champions for US independence. He was right on with his predictions about what Independence Day would mean to Americans in the future. He wrote the following to his wife Abigail Adams a day before the Declaration was adopted: “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 forever more.”
Thomas Jefferson – Like Adams, Jefferson went on to lead the country as President, but his major role in the founding of our free nation was as principal author of the Declaration of Independence. He worked with a committee of five other writers: John Adams, Benjamin Franklin, Robert R. Livingston and Roger Sherman.
King George III – George William Frederick served as King of Great Britain and King of Ireland from October 25, 1760 until the two countries united in 1801. He led Great Britain throughout the revolutionary war and was on the recipient end of the Declaration of Independence.
Richard Henry Lee – An American Statesman from Virginia, Lee presented a three-part resolution calling on congress to declare its independence in June which led to the drafting of the official Declaration of Independence that was adopted on July fourth.
John Dickinson – He bravely led an effort to delay the an official declaration of independence until the US could sign on a foreign ally, but was unsuccessful. He also served as a militia officer during the Revolution.
John Hancock – His is the largest signature of the 56 delegates in the Declaration of Independence, presumably because as President of Congress at the time, he was the first to sign. The name is now also known as reference to a person’s signature.
Hope you’ve learned something new about the leaders who helped guide our nation to independence. Be sure to take a look at the Spokeo Famous Person pages by simply typing in the name to learn more about other historical figures and celebrities.
Happy Independence Day!