10 Fun Facts About the Fourth of July

10 Fun Facts About the Fourth of July

By Johnny Moran

Did you know?
  1. On July 4, 1777 in Philadelphia, the first organized celebration of Independence Day took place. It was at this celebration that the tradition of setting off fireworks began (And lately it seems like it never ends!).

  1. According to the American Pyrotechnics Association, Americans typically spend around $1 billion annually on fireworks for 4th of July celebrations and set off an estimated 14,000 displays.

  1. On average, Americans eat around 150 million hot dogs on the 4th of July. The National Hot Dog and Sausage Council claims that that number of dogs can stretch all the way from Washington D.C. to Los Angeles more than five times!

  1. The first official Hot Dog Eating Contest was held in 1972, according to Nathan’s Famous. However, the first unofficial contest was held on July 4th, 1916 when four immigrants stood by the Nathan’s Hot Dog Stand and ate hot dogs in competition to see who was the most patriotic (sounds pretty American to me!).

  1. Thomas Jefferson began drafting the Declaration of Independence on an invention he called a “Writing Box”, which was designed as a portable desk with a fold-away writing surface and a lockable drawer with space for paper, pens, and a glass inkwell. This invention was essentially Jefferson’s version of a modern-day laptop!

  1. Robert G. Heft was just 17 years’ old when he designed our fifty-star American Flag in 1958 for a school project! He was to design a flag that celebrated the newest additions to the country, Hawaii and Alaska. In just over 12 hours, Heft sewed together the flag that we know today, for the very first time.

  1. As per U.S. Code § 8. Respect for flag: “The flag should never be used as wearing apparel, bedding, or drapery”. But flag fashionistas can breathe easy; this code will never be enforced or lead to violations.

  1. The colors of the flag are symbolic. Red symbolizes hardiness and valor, white symbolizes purity and innocence, and blue represents vigilance, perseverance, and justice.

  1. Six American Flags have been planted on the moon, with five out of the six still standing today. However, scientists believe that decades of extreme sunlight have probably bleached away the symbolic colors.

  1. Legend has it that Abigail Adams served John Adams Atlantic salmon, fresh garden peas, and new potatoes on July 4th, 1776 (the official date of American Independence!). Because of this, it is a tradition all through New England to serve poached salmon with egg sauce, alongside new potatoes and early peas, every Fourth of July.


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