The 4th July marks the Birthday of America. In 1776, on this day, the members of the second continental congress met in Philadelphia, adopting the final draft of the Declaration of Independence, proclaiming their sovereignty from Great Britain.
There are many ways the American people choose to celebrate this day. From BBQs and drinks, parades, festivals and even Hot Dog Eating Competitions! But the most popular it seems, is to celebrate with fireworks! Many people spot their opportunity to get out the house, and join thousands of fellow Americans to watch a Humongous Professional Firework Display. But it’s becoming more aware that people are choosing to do the celebrations at home, with friends and family in the garden, where they can perform their own celebratory private firework display.
So, here are 20 facts you may or may not know about Independence Day.
- Initially adopted by Congress on July 2, 1776, the revised version of the Declaration of Independence was not adopted until two days later.
- The oldest, continuous Independence Day celebration in the United States is the 4th of July Parade in Bristol, Rhode Island; it began in 1785.
- The Declaration of Independence was penned by Thomas Jeffersonand signed by 56 men representing 13 colonies.
- One of the United States’ patriotic songs, “Yankee Doodle” was originally sung by British military officers prior to the Revolution as a means to mock the disorganized American colonists who fought alongside them during the French and Indian Wars.
- France, Greece, Poland, Russia and several countries in South America used the Declaration of Independence as a beacon in their own struggles for freedom.
- The “Star Spangled Banner” was written by Francis Scott Key during the War of 1812 and not decreed the official national anthem of the United States until 1931.
- Three U.S. Presidents, John Adams, Thomas Jefferson and James Monroe, died on July 4th; Adams and Jefferson died within hours of each other in 1826 while Monroe died in 1831.
- In July 1776, the estimated number of people living in the newly independent nation was 2.5 million. According to the U.S. and World Population Clock, the nation’s estimated population in July 2013 was 316.2 million.
- The Pennsylvania Evening Post was the first newspaper to print the Declaration of Independence.
- Both the Philippines and Rwanda celebrate July 4th as a day of liberation. In Southeast Asia, it is known as“Republic Day” and Rwandans celebrate “Liberation Day.”
- The country’s 30th president, Calvin Coolidge, was born on Independence Day in 1872.
- Americans consume about 155 million hot dogs on Independence Day alone; it is the biggest hot dog holiday of the year.
- In 1870 Congress made Independence Day an official unpaid holiday; in 1938, it was changed to a paid federal holiday.
- Americans began observing the Fourth of July as early as 1777, when the first-ever major celebration in Philadelphia included a parade and a thirteen-shot cannon salute and fireworks.
- To avoid cracking it, the Liberty Bell has not been rung since 1846. To mark the quintessential day, every fourth of July it is symbolically tapped 13 times.
- John Adams and Thomas Jefferson are responsible for the bald eagle as the national bird; Benjamin Franklin wanted it to be the turkey.
- Eight of the 56 signers of the Declaration of Independence were born in Britain.
- The American Pyrotechnics Association (APA) estimates that more than 14,000 professional firework displayslight up the skies in the United States each 4th of July.
- Two of our nation’s great national symbols were made overseas. The Liberty Bell was cast in England, and the Statue of Liberty in France.
- The average age of the Signers of the Declaration of Independence was 45. Benjamin Franklin was the oldest at age 70, and Edward Rutledge was the youngest at age 26.
So, the question is. What do you and your family do to celebrate the 4th July? Do you even celebrate it at all?
Here at Skyburst, we think every moment in history should be celebrated like this, as we do Guy Fawkes Night.
Don’t worry though, if you haven’t made any plans yet, its not too late! Order fireworks online now for your 4th July Celebrations, or give us a call to book your Professional Firework Display Now.
Blog by Luke Christie
Skyburst The Firework Co