Our nation's founding fathers knew
how to count the cost of liberty
On July 4, 1776, there was
signed in the city of Philadelphia
America's historic documents:
The Declaration of Independence.
It marked the birth of this nation.
When the Declaration was adopted,
and the noise of cannon fire carried
the news far and wide.
General Washington had the document
to the army, and its ringing sentences
strengthened the morale of his
On July 8, 1776,
the people of Philadelphia
gathered at the old State House
to hear a reading
of the Declaration of Independence.
They were called together by the
ringing of the
Liberty Bell in the belfry of
It has been said that the bell
cracked on that joyful occasion.
This is not true, however.
The Liberty Bell cracked for the
first time in 1752,
after it had been brought from
It was recast the following year
Charles Stow and John Pass.
After its use in 1776 the bell
was rung each year
on the anniversary of the Declaration.
In 1835 a crack developed while
tolling for the death of John
famous chief justice of the Supreme
When the bell was rung on Washington's
birthday in 1846, it cracked beyond
It was struck lightly by officials
on April 6, 1917,when the United
States entered World WarI.
The historic old
bell hung in the hallway
of the State House (renamed Independence
until the bicentennial year of
1976, when it
was moved to a new pavilion nearby.
The original document of the Declaration
is preserved in a helium-filled
glass case in the National Archives
in Washington, D.C.
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