June 29, 2015
This week we celebrate the birthday of the greatest nation in the world, The United States. For many it’s a day off work, family picnics, parades, fairs, concerts, and fireworks. For others it’s a reminder of what we sacrificed to create this great independent nation.
Freedom isn’t free. Remember to thank our military, both active and retired. I am giving a special shout out to those in my family who have served, are serving, and who will be serving:
- Bob (my dad)
- The late Dave (my husband’s father)
- Bill (my husband’s step-father)
- Krista (my daughter)
- Aaron (my son-in-law)
- The late Anthony (my godfather)
- Michael (my cousin)
- Three of the first five presidents died on the Fourth of July: John Adams, Thomas Jefferson and James Monroe
- August 2, 1776 is the day most signers of the Declaration of Independence actually signed the Declaration
- Only two people actually signed the Declaration of Independence on July Fourth: John Hancock and Charles Thompson
- Calvin Coolidge, the 30th president, was born on July 4, 1872
- The Fourth of July become a legal federal holiday in 1938
- There is something written on the back of the Declaration of Independence. No, it’s not a treasure map, rather a message is written upside down at the bottom of the signed document: “Original Declaration of Independence dated 4th July 1776.” It’s not known who wrote it or when. Since parchment was usually rolled up during the Revolutionary War years, it’s thought this memo served as a label.
- The Fourth of July was originally celebrated with a lot of greenery instead of red, white and blue
- The modern flag was designed by high school student Robert G. Heft of Lancaster, Ohio as part of a class project
- The Declaration of Independence was penned by Thomas Jefferson and signed by 56 men representing 13 colonies, and 1 out of 8 signers were educated at Harvard (7 total)
- 87.5% ($2.8 million) of imported U.S. flags are from China.
- 97% ($190.7 million) of imported fireworks are from China.
- An estimated 150 million hot dogs will be consumed on July 4th.
- The White House held its first 4th of July party in 1801
- The tune of the National Anthem was originally used by an English drinking song called To Anacreon in Heaven.
- The Pennsylvania Evening Post was the first newspaper to print the Declaration of Independence
- 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.
- The American Pyrotechnics Association (APA) estimates that more than 14,000 professional firework displays light 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.
Have a safe and happy Fourth of July!
Loved this post. We just returned from a trip to DC where we were able to see one of the first copies of the Declaration of Independence as well as the Star Spangled Banner. Couldn’t take photos inside the National Archives, but the images will be forever in my mind.