In his weekly radio address, President Bush said, "This weekend, Americans are celebrating the anniversary of our Nation's independence. Two hundred and thirty-two years ago, our Founding Fathers came together in Philadelphia to proclaim that all men are created equal and that they are endowed by their Creator with unalienable rights to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness." Click here to read the transcript.
President Bush on Friday said, "...We must remember that the desire for freedom burns inside every man and woman and child. More than two centuries ago, this desire of freedom... had inspired the subjects of a mighty empire to declare themselves free and independent citizens of a new nation. Today that same desire for freedom has inspired 72 immigrants from around the world to become citizens of the greatest nation on Earth -- the United States of America. I congratulate you. I welcome you. I wish you all a happy Fourth of July. Thanks for inviting me. May God bless you, and may God continue to bless the United States of America."
More than two centuries ago, bold and courageous visionaries pledged their lives, their fortunes, and their sacred honor in signing the Declaration of Independence. Guided by ancient and eternal truths, our forefathers proclaimed to the world that liberty was the natural right of all mankind and in doing so began one of the greatest chapters in human history. On the Fourth of July, our country commemorates the great achievements of these heroes and reaffirms its unwavering confidence in the power of freedom.
It was the desire for freedom that inspired our Founding Fathers, and it is the belief in the universality of freedom that guides our Nation. On this occasion, we pay special tribute to the men and women of our Armed Forces, both past and present, who have answered freedom's call and defended the values that make America the greatest country on earth.
The British Parliament bypasses colonial assemblies and imposes several internal and external taxes on the outraged colonists.
Dec. 16, 1773
The colonial response to taxation without representation culminates in the Boston Tea Party. The Sons of Liberty dump 342 chests of tea into Boston harbor.
Sept. 5, 1774
Delegates begin meeting for the First Continental Congress and agree to send grievances to King George III.
April 19, 1775
Armed conflict between the colonists and British redcoats begins in Lexington and Concord, Massachusetts.
May 10, 1775
A Second Continental Congress begins meeting in Philadelphia.
June 11, 1776
The Continental Congress appoints a five-man committee, including Thomas Jefferson, to draft a declaration of independence.
June 28, 1776
The committee presents the declaration for debate and revision.
July 4, 1776
The Continental Congress adopts the Declaration of Independence without dissent.