Happy Fourth of July!
Happy Independence day!
July 4th marks the day the United States officially became its own nation. The Declaration of Independence was adopted on July 4th, 1776—and thus, America was born.
Here are a few interesting facts with which you can impress your friends at the barbecue:
- Some colonists celebrated Independence Day during the summer of 1776 by putting on mock funerals for King George III of England—symbolizing the death of the Crown’s rule on America.
- The first annual commemoration of Independence Day happened on July 4, 1777, in Philadelphia.
- John Adams, a Founding Father and the second president of the United States, strongly believed Independence Day should be celebrated on July 2nd. He even refused to attend 4th of July events because he felt so strongly about July 2nd being the correct date.
- Adams, along with Thomas Jefferson, another Founding Father, both died on July 4th, 1826. James Monroe, another U.S. president, also died on July 4th, but he passed in 1831.
- Thomas Jefferson was the first president to celebrate Independence Day at the White House in 1801. The celebration featured horse races, parades, food, and drinks—similar to the 4th of July celebrations we see today.
- Although the 4th of July was celebrated each year since 1776, it didn’t become a federal holiday until 1870. And it didn’t become a paid holiday for federal employees until 1941.