Fun Facts for the Fourth of July

By Megan Morrow
Published July 1, 2019

Most Americans recognize the Fourth of July as the United States’ birthday, established with the signing of the Declaration of Independence in 1776. You probably did not know that John Hancock and Charles Thomson, secretary of Congress, were the only founders to sign on this day – the other 54 signers all inked their signatures about a month later.

Following are some fun and potentially surprising facts to help get you in the spirit of celebration this Fourth of July:

  • We love to eat and drink on the Fourth, downing more than 150 million hot dogs and spending more than $1.5 billion on beer and wine, according to WalletHub. Sixty-two percent of us will attend a picnic on Independence Day.
  • Thomas Jefferson drafted the Declaration of Independence on a “laptop,” also known as a writing desk that fit on a person’s lap. He changed the initial language of “pursuit of property” to the well-known “pursuit of happiness.” Both Jefferson and John Adams died on this day in 1826 (the only two signers who later served as President of the United States).
  • Independence Day was not a paid holiday until 1941; prior to that, it was recognized as a federal holiday, but an unpaid one.
  • Americans spend more than $825 million purchasing fireworks and about 16,000 fireworks displays are hosted each year. Delaware and Massachusetts, however, ban all consumer fireworks.
  • Sixty-two percent of Americans own flags, according to WalletHub, and there have been 27 different official flags used throughout the years. Most of our flags are imported from China.
  • Nearly 90 places in the United States have the words “liberty,” “eagle,” “freedom” or “independence” in their name.
  • The Liberty Bell in Philadelphia is tapped (rather than rung, to prevent further cracking) 13 times each year on the Fourth of July to recognize the original 13 colonies.
  • Bristol, R.I., is host to the oldest Independence Day celebration, which began in 1785.

Interestingly, our celebrations today are not unlike the first ones – full of fireworks and festivities that honor the red, white and blue and our nation’s independence.

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The material presented here is for information purposes only and is not to be considered an offer to buy or sell any security. This report was prepared from sources believed to be reliable but it is not guaranteed as to accuracy and it is not a complete summary of statement of all available data. Information and opinions are current up to the date of publication and are subject to change without notice. The purchase and sale of securities should be conducted on an individual basis considering the risk tolerance and investment objective of each investor and with the advice and counsel of a professional advisor. The opinions expressed by Ms. Morrow are strictly her own and do not necessarily reflect those of Herbert J. Sims & Co., Inc. or their affiliates. This is not a solicitation to buy or an offer to sell any particular investment. All investment involves risk and may result in a loss of principal. Investors should carefully consider their own circumstances before making any investment decision.

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