This Independence Day before you cook those dogs, bake that American pie, or head out to the pool take a minute to remember why we celebrate this day. Below is a list of interesting facts you probably didn’t know about this 4th of July holiday.
- Which day is it? Author Keeneth C. Davis revealed that July 2nd is actually the real day of independence. John Adams wrote to his wife Abigail that July 2nd would go down in history and will be celebrated with parades, bells ringing and fireworks. Congress actually did rule in favor of independence on the 2nd. However, two days after is when they accepted Jefferson’s declaration. Only two men actually signed on the fourth: John Hancock and Charles Thompson.
- John Adams and Thomas Jefferson both died on July 4th, 1826, and James Monroe in 1831. Alternatively, Calvin Coolidge was born on July 4th, 1872.
- A Turkey? Benjamin Franklin wrote a letter to his daughter Sarah Bache in 1784 that he was displeased with the decision to make the symbol of America the bald eagle. In Franklin’s eyes, he thought a turkey would have suited better. A bald eagle is a bird of “bad moral character”, whereas a turkey is a true “original native of America…a Bird of Courage, that would not hesitate to attack a Grenadier of the British Guards who should presume to invade his farm yard with a red coat on”.
- Fourth of July wasn’t considered a national holiday until 1870! It was part of a bill to officially recognize other holidays such as Christmas.
- A popular and perhaps most recognizable patriotic song of them all, Yankee Doodle, was originally a song prior to the Revolution by British military officers mocking the unorganized ‘Yankees’.
- 87.5% of imported American flags come from China, along with 97% of our imported fireworks. Thanks, China!
- HOT DOG! Over 150 million hot dogs will be consumed on July 4th. Hamburger anyone?
- The Philippines and Rwanda share the same date as their independence known as “Republic Day” for SouthEast Asia, and “Liberation Day” for Rwanda.
- The tone of our national anthem was originally used by an English drinking song called ‘To Anacreon in Heaven’. Cheers!
- Let Freedom Ring! But not too loudly. The iconic Liberty Bell has not been rung since 1846. Instead, every year to celebrate Independence Day, the bell is ‘tapped’ 13 times to signal for bells across the country to start ringing.
Take these fun and interesting facts of history and go forth to your barbecue and be the true patriot you always were. Share these and instantly become the conversation starter of the party. Enjoy your 4th of July everyone and be safe!