History Fact: Established by the Second Continental Congress to commemorate the Declaration of Independence from Great Britain in 1776. Coincidentally, Thomas Jefferson and John Adams, two signers of the Declaration of Independence and later U.S. Presidents, both died on July 4, 1826, the 50th anniversary. James Monroe, another Founding Father and elected as the 5th U.S. president, who served during the War of 1812 against Great Britain, also died on July 4 in 1831. The Geneva Fire Department wishes you and your family a safe and happy Independence Day! God Bless America!