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Cornelius News

Happy Independence Day!

May 20. Yes, today is May 20, but on this day 245 years ago when Mecklenburg County patriots declared their independence from King George in Great Britain—more than a year ahead of the rest of the Colonies.

On May 19, 1775, a meeting was held in the courthouse in the middle of the village of Charlotte, at the intersection of Trade and Tryon Streets, which resulted in the Mecklenburg Declaration of Independence of May 20, 1775.

Although there are no copies of our declaration, that spot in Charlotte is called Independence Square to this day. Col. Thomas Polk read it from the courthouse steps. There are subsequent documents (pictured).

This was the first time Americans had declared themselves to be a Free and Independent People – 17-plus months before the July 4, 1776 Declaration of Independence.

How cool is that?

Interested in local history? Join the Mecklenburg Historical Association.