By Jace Shoemaker-Galloway
Independence Day is right around the corner, which means the lazy days of summer will be in full swing. July 4th is a special holiday many Americans look forward to – picnics, parades, barbeques, pool parties and of course, fireworks. After all, what could be better than spending a warm summer day relaxing and unwinding with friends and loved ones?
Independence Day is of course American’s birthday, when our country declared independence from Great Britain. Here are some fun trivia facts about July 4th.
- The first newspaper to publish the Declaration of Independence was the Pennsylvania Evening Post, on July 6th, 1776.
- Three United States presidents died on July 4th. Presidents Thomas Jefferson and John Adams died on the 50th anniversary of Independence Day, on the Jubilee of Freedom, in 1826. Both men signed the Declaration of Independence. In 1831, James Monroe died on July 4th.
- July 4th was declared a paid federal holiday by the United States Congress in 1938. However, it was later determined that governmental employees of the District of Columbia were not included. In 1941, the declaration was amended to include D.C. employees.
- The Declaration’s famous signature by John Hancock is almost 5 inches long.
- Benjamin Franklin lobbied for the turkey to be our national bird. He wrote, “For a truth, the turkey is in comparison a much more respectable bird, and withal a true original native of America . . . a bird of courage, and would not hesitate to attack a grenadier of the British guards, who should presume to invade his farmyard with a red coat on.” Unfortunately for Franklin and the turkey, the turkey was outvoted and the bald eagle won.
No matter how you celebrate the holiday this year, Independence Day is as American as baseball, mom and apple pie. Have a happy and safe July 4th! And send free 4th of July Ecards