Celebrating Independence Day on Cape Cod

By Donna Cain, Innkeeper and Owner

Ever since I can remember I never really liked the July 4th holiday. I respected what we were celebrating and will forever be grateful to be an American. This year I actually stopped to analyze why I had so many negative feelings about this holiday. I think it all started as a young girl when my mom kept repeating stories about how a firecracker went off in her hand and gave her a terrible burn. It was a traumatic experience for her and she was determined not to have any harm come my way. So every year, I would hear about her unfortunate  story, and we would go see the local small town fireworks and enjoy a family barbecue.

When we were raising our family in Houston we lived in a neighborhood that loved fireworks. Everyone would gather on the street to set off the different fireworks they had purchased.  I always dreaded the tradition as I hated the smell and noise and was fearful that one of the kids would get hurt or a flying firecracker would land on one of our houses…..Byron always thought I was a little stick in the mud…..but oh well, I could not change how I felt. I guess in the back of my mind I was always thinking about my mom’s story and worrying about our kids.

Year’s later, with our kids full grown and a new career as innkeepers on Cape Cod, I decided this morning that I was going to change my attitude. We planned a fun fruit course for our guest’s breakfast in celebration of this special day! Byron is the official fruit chef and I was impresses with his creativity.

It also felt appropriate to look up what Wikipedia chronicled about this important historical holiday as highlighted below.

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

During the American Revolution, the legal separation of the Thirteen Colonies from Great Britain occurred on July 2, 1776, when theSecond Continental Congress voted to approve a resolution of independence that had been proposed in June by Richard Henry Lee ofVirginia declaring the United States independent from Great Britain.[4][5] After voting for independence, Congress turned its attention to the Declaration of Independence, a statement explaining this decision, which had been prepared by a Committee of Five, with Thomas Jefferson as its principal author. Congress debated and revised the wording of the Declaration, finally approving it on July 4. A day earlier, John Adams had written to his wife Abigail:

The second day of July, 1776, will be the most memorable epoch in the history of America. I am apt to believe that it will be celebrated by succeeding generations as the great anniversary festival. 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.[6]

Adams’s prediction was off by two days. From the outset, Americans celebrated independence on July 4, the date shown on the much-publicized Declaration of Independence, rather than on July 2, the date the resolution of independence was approved in a closed session of Congress.[7]

Historians have long disputed whether Congress actually signed the Declaration of Independence on July 4, even though Thomas Jefferson, John Adams, and Benjamin Franklin all later wrote that they had signed it on that day. Most historians have concluded that the Declaration was signed nearly a month after its adoption, on August 2, 1776, and not on July 4 as is commonly believed.[8][9][10][11][12]

In a remarkable coincidence, both John Adams and Thomas Jefferson, the only signers of the Declaration of Independence later to serve as Presidents of the United States, died on the same day: July 4, 1826, which was the 50th anniversary of the Declaration. Although not a signer of the Declaration of Independence, but another Founding Father who became a President, James Monroe, died on July 4, 1831, thus becoming the third president in a row who died on this memorable day. Calvin Coolidge, the 30th President, was born on July 4, 1872, and, so far, is the only President to have been born on Independence Day.

And lastly, like all good holidays, the best part is the wonderful food. I stopped by a local farm stand and purchased the most wonderfully sweet strawberries. Once home I immediately baked some delicious biscuits and whipped up some homemade whip cream. Since all of our check in’s had arrived at both of our Cape Cod Bed and Breakfasts, Brewster by the Sea Inn and Spa and the Captain Freeman, it was perfect timing to have our small little family gather for a good old fashion hamburger with potato salad and deviled eggs……what could be more all American!

We have always said that we have the most wonderful guests come stay with us at Brewster by the Sea and Captain Freeman. It is such a special honor when some of our dear repeat guests keep coming back year after year. This morning, one of our favorites, Sara and Arthur, brought us some very special chocolate covered strawberries. We make a lot of chocolate covered strawberries at the inn but nothing could compare to these strawberries. The chocolate was extra special and the decorations very creative. Thank you Sara and Arthur!

And now a picture for the best part of the whole day……does that tell you something about my priorities in life…..family and dessert:) Happy 4th of July to everyone and happy to report it was a happy day for me as well.

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