This year, we are going to start our 4th of July celebrations by reading to our family this story, simply written so children can understand. Join us in remembering the brave men, women and soldiers who made it all happen.
“Clang!, Clang!” The music of the great bell floated over Philadelphia. It was calling the people to the State House yard. There they would hear a man read the Declaration of Independence.
Until 1776, the American colonies had been ruled by England. Now the Americans had decided to rule themselves, they would build a new nation.
It was a brave thing for the Americans to do. For they knew it meant a long war with England, England had a really big army and navy.
When the people in Philadelphia heard the bell, they poured into the streets and raced into the State House. Most of them knew that Congress had voted for the Declaration on July 4th and this was their first chance to hear someone read it.
As soon as the crowd gathered, the bell stopped ringing. A man stood up and read the Declaration of Independence just as Thomas Jefferson had written it, Jefferson was a leader from Virginia.
The Declaration of Independence told the world why Americans wanted to be free. It told of the many unfair things England’s King George III had done and it said that the colonies were now independent.
“Hurrah!” the crowd shouted. Up in the State House tower a man rang the bell again, he thought of the words written on it, “Proclaim liberty throughout all the land, unto all the inhabitants thereof.” These wonderful words are from the Bible. The bell they are written on is now called the Liberty Bell. The State House is now called Independence Hall.
News of the Declaration of Independence spread slowly throughout America. It went by men on horseback and by boat. There were no telephones, radios or computers then.
General George Washington was in New York City where a copy of the Declaration was sent to him. He had it read to his soldiers.
The American soldiers had already been fighting the English. They had been fighting for their rights, now they had something greater to fight for – their freedom!
The soldiers knew this meant a hard fight; they felt sure they could win. We call the war they fought the Revolutionary War.
There was a big statue of King George III in New York, it was made of lead. Some of the soldiers pulled the statue down and cut off its head using the lead from King George’s statue to make bullets. The Americans then fired the bullets at the king’s soldiers.
When news of the Declaration reached Boston, the people went wild with joy. American soldiers fired their cannon thirteen times in honor of the thirteen American states. Bells rang, drums beat, and the people began to pull down all signs that said King George III was king. They also made a big bonfire with all the signs and danced around it happily.
News of America’s independence spread to all the states. Finally, a copy of the Declaration reached a little settlement in South Carolina. Not many people there could read but a nine-year-old boy named Andrew Jackson had learned to read in school. The grown-ups met at a farmhouse where the boy stood up and read the Declaration.
Everyone clapped when they heard the boy say “All men are created equal,” then cheered when he read that everyone has a right to “Life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.”
The nation called the United States of America was born on July 4th, 1776.
All our posts this week are dedicated to the brave men and women of the armed forces and their families.
THANK YOU FROM THE BOTTOM OF OUR HEARTS!