July 4th Fun Facts
My sister was born on the 4th of July. We were 10 months apart in age. For as long as I could remember, I was jealous of her birthday because for years, I thought the picnic and fireworks were for her special day—and all I got was a cake.
After all these years, I thought it would be fun (even though I’m a day late) to share some 4th of July fun facts with you (from Wikipedia).
- In 1777, thirteen gunshots were fired in salute, once at morning and once again as evening fell, on July 4 in Bristol, Rhode Island. Philadelphia celebrated the first anniversary in a manner a modern American would find quite familiar: an official dinner for the Continental Congress, toasts, 13-gun salutes, speeches, prayers, music, parades, troop reviews, and fireworks. Ships were decked with red, white, and blue bunting.
- In 1778, General George Washington marked July 4 with a double ration of rum for his soldiers and an artillery salute. Across the Atlantic Ocean, ambassadors John Adams and Benjamin Franklin held a dinner for their fellow Americans in Paris, France.
- In 1779, July 4 fell on a Sunday. The holiday was celebrated on Monday, July 5.
- In 1781 the Massachusetts General Court became the first state legislature to recognize July 4 as a state celebration.
- John Adams believed that July 2nd was the correct date on which to celebrate the birth of American independence, and would reportedly turn down invitations to appear at July 4th events in protest.
- Adams and Thomas Jefferson both died on July 4, 1826—the 50th anniversary of the adoption of the Declaration of Independence.
- In 1791 the first recorded use of the name “Independence Day” occurred.
- In 1870, the U.S. Congress made Independence Day an unpaid holiday for federal employees.
- In 1938, Congress changed Independence Day to a paid federal holiday.
I hope your summer holiday is awesome—because you deserve a break.
So, how did you celebrate your 4th of July holiday?