The Declaration of Independence

by Thomas Jefferson

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Why is July 4, 1776 significant in American history?   

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July 4, 1776, is a significant date in American history. On that day, the United States formally declared its independence from Great Britain. We announced to the world that we were now an independent country. By doing this, it meant we would fight against Great Britain to see if we would truly receive our independence. We had to win the Revolutionary War in order to get our independence from Great Britain.

Conditions in the colonies had been rapidly deteriorating. After the Boston Tea Party, the British passed the Intolerable Acts. The colonists refused to obey these laws, and they formed their own militias. In April 1775, the Battles of Lexington and Concord were fought. Both sides suffered casualties. The King of England rejected the Olive Branch Petition, which asked for a peaceful resolution to the crisis by having the British remove the unpopular laws. The Second Continental Congress began to debate resolutions for independence in June 1776. Thomas Jefferson was asked to write a draft of a document that would declare our independence from Great Britain.

After some revision, the draft was approved, and the Declaration of Independence was adopted on July 4, 1776. This is why we celebrate July 4th as our Independence Day, and that day is a national holiday.

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