4th of July Trivia
13 Trivia Snippets About the 4th of July
- The Declaration of Independence was signed in Philadelphia, PA. Though Congress adopted it on July 4th and members of the drafting committee claim that it was also signed on July 4th, some historical evidence suggests that the full compliment of 56 signatures was not present on the document until November of the same year.
- The Declaration of Independence was first adopted on July 2nd and then revised on July 4th, 1776.
- Thomas Jefferson wrote the Declaration of Independence when he was 33 years old. Only about 75% of the text from his draft made it to the final document.
- Of the 56 men who signed the Declaration of Independence, John Hancock’s signature is the largest among them. This is why "John Hancock" has, in the American lexicon, become synonymous with "signature."
- 2.5 million people lived in the Colonies in 1776. Today more than 300 million live in the United States.
- Three U.S. Presidents have died on July 4th. John Adams and Thomas Jefferson died on the same day in 1826. James Monroe died in 1831.
- The Liberty Bell has not been rung since about 1835, when it is believed to have cracked while ringing in honor of the death of Chief Justice John Marshall.
- The stars on the first American Flag were circled to signify equality among the 13 Colonies. This version of the American flag is usually referred to as the Betsy Ross flag — and there's nothing to suggest it was yet in use as of the signing of the Declaration of Independence!
Betsy Ross Outdoor Historic Flags
Betsy Ross Small Historic Flags
- The 4th of July became a paid holiday in 1938, and a federal holiday in 1941.
BONUS FACT — On the back of the American two-dollar bill is a portion of John Trumbill's painting, Declaration of Independence. The painting is commonly misconstrued as the signing of the Declaration of Independence when, in fact, it is actually a depiction of the drafting committee presenting the Declaration of Independence to Congress.
John Trumbull's Declaration of Independence
Backside of American Two-Dollar Bill
- It is estimated that over 74 million Americans — about 1/4 of the population — cookout for the 4th of July every year.
- Americans consume 150 million hotdogs on the 4th of July each year!
- In the U.S., over a billion pounds of watermelon, a popular 4th of July treat, are sold annually.
- Baseball and Apple Pie are American pastimes and 4th of July standards.
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