The 4th of July(Fourth of July) also called as the American Independence Day, is a federal holiday across the United States of America since the year 1941, but the Independence Day celebrations began dating back to the 18th century as well as the American Revolution.
What is 4th of July? (It’s history)
It was July 2, 1776 that the Continental Congress approved a vote in favour of US independence and just two days later, the delegated belong to 13 colonies agree to adopt the Declaration of Independence, which is a document that was issued by Thomas Jefferson. And since the year 1776 till today, Fourth of July, is celebrated as the birth of the United States as well as American Independence. The day is marked with range of festivities starting from parades, fireworks, concerts and fairs to simple family get together and barbecues.
Why do we celebrate 4th of July?
When fights broke out in the Revolutionary War in April 1775, some of the settlers had the desire to attain complete Independence from Great Britain’s ruling. However, by the year 1776, many settlers came forward in favour of attaining Independence, all thanks to the growing hostility they had against Britain.
The Continental Congress decided to call for a meeting on June 7 at the Pennsylvania State House located in Philadelphia. At the meet, Richard Henry lee, a delegate from Virginia, introduced a resolution calling for the independence of the colonies. The discussion turned into a debate due to which the Congress decided to postpone the vote of the resolution made by Lee. It formed a five man committee, which included delegates from Virginia, Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, Connecticut and New York. The main aim of forming the committee was to issue a formal statement, known as Declaration of Independence, containing the reasons for the break with Britain.
Finally, on July 2, the Continental Congress made its vote in favour of the resolution proposed by Lee declaring American Independence. The same day, John Adams of Massachusetts, who was a member of the five man committee, informed his wife Abigail that henceforth, July 2 will be celebrated as the biggest anniversary festival and the celebration must include parade, games, guns, sports, bonfires from one end to the other end of the continent.
Lastly, the Continental Congress adopted the Declaration formally by signing it on July 4 and since then; the day is seen as the birth of the United States as well as Independence Day USA. Despite of the fact that the vote for actual American Independence was conducted on July 2, from the onset, the 4th of July became the day celebrated as Independence Day.
How was 4th of July celebrated earlier?
Just after the adoption of the Declaration of Independence, the festivities associated to the celebration such as bonfires, parades, concerts were carried out. It was on July 4, 1777 that the first annual commemoration of Independence was held by Philadelphia.
Later, on the second year anniversary of independence in 1778, George Washington gave his soldiers double rations of rum and it was Massachusetts became the first ever state to announce July 4 as official state holiday. The Americans continued to celebrate the Independence Day every year after the Revolutionary War ended.
4th of July becomes a Federal Holiday:
In the year 1812, United States had to face Great Britain again in a war which made the tradition of following patriotic celebration on Independence Day even more far-reaching. Later in 1870, the United States Congress announced July 4 as a federal holiday and by the year 1941, the government announced the day as a paid holiday for federal workers across the states.
How is 4th July celebrated?
Since the 19th century, the Fourth of July has become a major focus of fun activities, which includes the usual family reunion, barbeques as well as fireworks. The most common symbol that one can find often on this day is the American flag as well as the national anthem of the United States, The Star-Spangled Banner. The traditional flag raising ceremony is carried out each year on this day at the Washington Old Hall in the UK.
Well, if you head over to Shoreditch in London on July 4 this year then you will be able to get your hands on greasy food and take part in leisure activities.
Moreover, if you love watching movies then you can head over to the Merchant Square located in Paddington, London where a free screening of the movie La La Land is being hosted.
Well, if you love to know more about the history of George Washington, who went on to become the first President of the US, then you can visit the Sulgrave Manor and Garden on Sunday, July 8 and enjoy the Happy 4th of July celebrations and festivities conducted there.
We wish you a Happy fourth of July filled with joy and good health.