Americans have gathered on street corners and front lawns — honking horns, banging pots and pans, and starting impromptu dance parties — as a vitriolic election and exhausting four-day wait for results came to an end.
Just after The Associated Press and other news organisations declared that former vice president Joe Biden beat President Donald Trump, fireworks erupted in Atlanta.
In Maine, a band playing at a farmers’ market broke into the Battle Hymn of the Republic.
Neighbours ran out of their homes in Manhattan and gathered for an unplanned street party, whooping, dancing and high-fiving strangers.
In Louisville, Kentucky, Biden supporters gathered on their lawns to toast victory with champagne. In Harlem, they danced in the streets, banged cowbells and honked their car horns.
Mr Trump’s supporters have for days been protesting outside ballot-counting operations, alleging without evidence that the slow-moving results were proof of cheating.
But on Saturday morning, it was the Democrats taking to the streets in jubilant displays, celebrating what was for them an end to four years of constant crises, chaos and anxiety.
“It’s surreal, I feel like I’m free from the clutches of evil,” said Lola Faleit, a 26-year-old human resources manager in New York City.
“I feel less worried for my immigrant friends. In 2016, we woke up crying. Today we are celebrating. Look, the sky is clear blue, the sun is out, Mother Nature is celebrating, too.”
November 7 at 11.25am became for many of Mr Biden’s supporters a moment of such historic magnitude they suspect they will always remember what they were doing, even those in the midst of the most mundane weekend activities.
Retired teacher and school principal Kay Nicholas, 73, was vacuuming in her home north west of Detroit when she heard Mr Biden had been declared the winner.
“All I could say is ‘thank God,’” she said, choking up. “It has nothing to do with Democrat or Republican. It has to do with decency.
“This country has got integrity and hopefully we can get decency. I think Joe Biden can do it and bring back kindness.”