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1) Which document does the Fourth of July commemorate?

The Fourth of July is a federal holiday in the United States commemorating the adoption of the Declaration of Independence on July 4, 1776.

2) Who declared the thirteen colonies were no longer part of the British Empire?

The Continental Congress declared that the thirteen American colonies regarded themselves as a new nation: the United States of America.

3) Which statesman proposed the resolution of independence from Great Britain?

The Second Continental Congress voted to approve a resolution of independence that had been proposed in June by Richard Henry Lee of Virginia declaring the United States independent from Great Britain rule.

4) On what day did Congress vote for American independence?

Although the Continental Congress declared independence on July 4, they actually voted to declare independence two days earlier, on July 2, 1776. John Adams would later write to his wife: "The second day of July, 1776, will be the most memorable epoch in the history of America.... 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."

5) Who was the principal author of the Declaration of Independence?

The Declaration of Independence was prepared by a Committee of Five, with Thomas Jefferson as its principal author.

6) Which newspaper first printed the Declaration of Independence?

On July 6, 1776, The Pennsylvania Evening Post, which was published every Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday, carried the Declaration on the front page.

7) In 1778, how did George Washington commemorate the Fourth of July?

In 1778, from his headquarters at Ross Hall, near New Brunswick, New Jersey, General George Washington marked July 4 with a double ration of rum for his soldiers.

8) Who wrote the lyrics to "The Star-Spangled Banner"?

The lyrics were written on September 14, 1814, by amateur poet Francis Scott Key after witnessing the bombardment of Fort McHenry by British ships of the Royal Navy in Baltimore Harbor during the Battle of Baltimore in the War of 1812. Key was inspired by the large American flag flying triumphantly above the fort during the American victory.

9) Which U.S. President first held a Fourth of July celebration at the White House?

Although John Adams was the first president to occupy the executive mansion, it was Thomas Jefferson who established the traditions of a July 4th celebration at the White House. On July 4, 1801, he opened the Executive Mansion to diplomats, civil and military officers and Cherokee chiefs.

10) What was the first state to declare the 4th of July an official holiday?

On July 4, 1781, the Massachusetts General Court became the first state legislature to recognize July 4 as an official state celebration.