History 4th of JULY
Do You Know the History of the 4th of July?
Independence Day is the celebration of the birthday of the United States of America, referred to in secularized language as July 4th
or the Fourth of July. On July 4th, 1776, the Continental Congress formally adopted the Declaration of Independence; thus, breaking ties with the Kingdom of Great Britain, and a new nation was born. The document, primarily written by Thomas Jefferson, served as a formal announcement that the 13 American colonies were no longer part of the British Empire and would henceforth be free and independent states.
Independence Day has long been the most important of all America can anniversaries, and its very first celebration was held in the nation’s capital, then Philadelphia. Congress established Independence Day as a holiday in 1870, and as a legal holiday in 1941. Most American businesses are closed and the citizens enjoy the summer holiday with cookouts, get-togethers, concerts, baseball, picnics, barbecues, bon fires, parades, and at night time enjoying displays of fireworks. Some people hold re-enactments of the Revolutionary War era and some people give political speeches at events across the nations’ cities and towns.
The Flag and symbols of it are displayed everywhere, in this annual outpouring of patriotism. An expression of pride and hope can be found in many patriotic songs such as the National Anthem, The Star Spangled Banner, America the Beautiful, God Bless America, My Country Tis of Thee, and The Stars and Stripes Forever.
Did You Know?
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.
JULY 4TH BECOMES A NATIONAL HOLIDAY
The tradition of patriotic celebration became even more widespread after the War of 1812, in which the United States again faced Great Britain. In 1870, the U.S. Congress made July 4th a federal holiday; in 1941, the provision was expanded to grant a paid holiday to all federal employees. Over the years, the political importance of the holiday would decline, but Independence Day remained an important national holiday and a symbol of patriotism.
Falling in mid-summer, the Fourth of July has since the late 19th century become a major focus of leisure activities and a common occasion for family get-togethers, often involving fireworks and outdoor barbecues. The most common symbol of the holiday is the American flag, and a common musical accompaniment is “The Star- Spangled Banner,” the National Anthem of the United States.