As the days of summer seem to get hotter and longer, I can’t help but feel excited when the 4th of July comes around. With fireworks, hot dogs, pool parties, and all the fun-in-the-sun you can imagine, it feels like the climax of summer. It’s the time when even banks are closed, families gather around the barbeque, and everyone seems to wind down with a glass of ice-cold lemonade. July 4th is a special holiday beloved by every American.
Most of us know July 4th, 1776 as the day America declared her independence from Britain. With that said, here are a few fun facts you might not know about one of America’s favorite days of the year.
- To start, July 4th wasn’t deemed a federal holiday until 1870–about 100 years after America declared independence.
- Americans consume about 155 million hot dogs on the 4th of July, and we spend about $167.5 million on watermelon.
- Calvin Coolidge, America’s 30th president, was actually born on July 4th. Imagine sharing your birthday with your country!
- America’s tradition of fireworks can be traced back to our first Independence Day in 1777 when we fired 13 cannons to represent the 13 colonies.
- Last, but certainly not least, the Declaration of Independence was formally declared on July 2nd, which was the day John Adams believed to be “the most memorable epoch in the history of America.” Turns out, he was a couple of days off, but was nonetheless accurate in the day’s description! July 4th was the date that Congress approved the final text of the Declaration of Independence.
All fun facts aside, it is important for us to always remember those who fought before us. Our freedom to celebrate the 4th isn’t entirely free but is constantly paid for by our faithful, hard-working military. This 4th of July (or 2nd—whichever you choose), take a moment to shake a soldier’s hand and say thank you or whisper a prayer for those in the line of duty. It is because of them we get to enjoy our beloved holiday, and thanks to them, we are able to call America home.
Written by Camille (NEW: Click on author’s name for more information about him or her!)