The July 4th holiday is about celebrating with family and friends, but what else is it really about? Is it about the fireworks, potato salad, BBQ, bug zappers, and red-white-and-blue party favors? Well, it’s a little bit of all that and more:
- In May 1776, after a year of disputing between the colonists and English Parliament over taxation without representation, the colonies sent delegates to the Second Continental Congress. In June, the delegates realized their efforts were fruitless and formed a committee to draft the formal Declaration of Independence. Thomas Jefferson chaired the committee and submitted the first draft to Congress on June 28, 1776.
- July 8, 1776, in Philadelphia, the first Independence Day was celebrated. The Liberty Bell rang causing citizens to flock to Independence Hall for the first public reading of the Declaration of Independence.
- In May or June 1776, the Congressional Committee commissioned Betsy Ross to sew the first American flag.
- The official event signing of the Declaration of Independence did not occur until August 2, 1776, when 50 men signed it. The last signor was Thomas McKean in January 1777.
- For over six months, the signers’ names remained confidential to protect them from a possible treasonable act; punishable by law resulting in death. This most likely would have occurred if independence was not achieved.
- In 1804, the White House held the first public July 4th event.
- According to American legend, Uncle Sam probably began in 1812. At this time, Samuel Wilson, a meat packer, provided meat to the U.S. Army. His shipments were stamped with the initials, U.S. An unknown quipped that the initials meant “Uncle Sam.” This tomfoolery eventually led to Uncle Sam symbolizing the U.S. government.
- July 4th is one of the few federally recognized holidays that have not been moved to the closest Friday or Monday. Congress declared July 4th a federal legal holiday in 1941.
Have a safe and happy July 4th. If you’re not already visiting us over the Holiday, consider a quick get away and Book Now online! We’ve got some RED Hot Specials and summer Family Reunion Deals at San Diego Country Estates!