The Fourth of July, Independence Day in the United States, is a time of grand celebration and national pride. Why exactly is it commemorated on this particular date? To understand the significance of July 4th, we must explore this important holiday’s historical origins.
The United States is gearing up to celebrate the 247th anniversary of its independence. July 4th is a magnificent fireworks exhibition, expansive open-air assemblies featuring barbecues, and spirited parades adorned with stars and stripes, unfolding throughout the country.¹
According to the Library of Congress, July 4, 1776, witnessed the formal adoption of the Declaration of Independence by the Second Continental Congress, representing the colonies’ definitive choice to separate from the Kingdom of Great Britain. After the War of 1812 between the United States and Great Britain, the observance of patriotic festivities on July 4 gained greater popularity.
In 1870, the U.S. Congress officially designated July 4 as a federal holiday, and in 1941, it was further extended to provide federal employees with a paid day off. Independence Day remains of utmost national significance, embodying the essence of patriotism.¹
Being situated during summer, the Fourth of July has evolved into a prominent event for leisure pursuits and family get-togethers since the late 19th century. Festivities typically encompass mesmerizing firework spectacles and delightful outdoor barbecues.
Here are 3 fun facts about the 4th of July.
The act of voting for independence did not take place on July 4th
A vote for America’s independence was made by the Second Continental Congress on July 2nd. July 4th, 1776 holds significance as it marks the official adoption of the Declaration of Independence by Congress. Notably, John Adams, a prominent leader of the American War of Independence and the second President of the United States, foresaw July 2nd as the future celebration of Independence Day. In a letter to his wife, Abigail, Adams expressed his belief that “the second day of July 1776, will be celebrated by succeeding generations as the great anniversary festival.” ²
Folding the National Flag of the United States into a triangular shape has a meaningful reason
The National Flag of the United States is ceremoniously folded into a triangular shape, symbolizing the renowned “tri-cornered” hats worn by soldiers in the Continental Army during the Revolutionary War.²
The 4th of July was officially a holiday in 1870
The Fourth of July did not become a federal holiday until 1870 when it was officially recognized as an unpaid holiday. It took over 70 years for it to be established as a paid federal holiday, which occurred in 1941.
The commemoration of USA Independence Day carries immense significance for the people of the nation. It serves as a representation of historical and cultural values, symbolizing the birth of American democracy and the enduring principles of freedom and independence.
Happy Fourth of July!
1- Economic times. 2023. Independence Day 2023: Why is it celebrated on the Fourth of July in the US? Available at:https://economictimes.indiatimes.com/news/international/us/independence-day-2023-why-is-it-celebrated-on-the-fourth-of-july-in-us/articleshow/101422877.cms. Date Accessed 3rd July 2023.
2- Adarsh.K.2023. Five mind-blowing facts related to the Fourth of July. Available at:https://www.hindustantimes.com/lifestyle/festivals/five-mind-blowing-facts-related-to-4th-of-july-us-independence-day-101688323113973.html. Date Accessed: 3rd July 2023.