History

America’s Star-Spangled Celebration: Exploring the historical background and practice of commemorating independence day on the 4th of July

The 4th of July is Independence Day, which is one of the most popular American holidays to which people all over the country celebrate freedom and the country’s independence with barbecues, parades, and fireworks and enjoying tasty food with friends and families. American independence is a liberation that was done on 4th of July 1776 through assistance of the Founding Fathers to free from Britain’s colonization and embezzle self-rule.

Even to this day, almost 250 years later, Independence Day or July 4th can be regarded as one of the most popular and significant holidays in America.

Some of the historical background on the American freedom include:

Hierarchy and Tradition Give Way to the New Labouring Class

This means that the road to America’s independence was not initiated the moment the founding fathers picked up their quills to pen the declaration. By 1776, tensions were escalating and feelings of patriotism were roaring at the top of their lungs. The British Parliament levied many tax acts on imported goods without consideration to the colonies, and the Americans cried foul ‘No taxation without representation!’ The Boston Tea Party of 1773 was one of the earliest and most daring acts of rebellion whereby the pro-colony protesters dumped imported tea cargo into the sea in protest.

The opposition to British rule continued to intensify and the first conflict in the Revolutionary War took place in the Battles of Lexington and Concord which occurred in April 1775. The Continental Congress was first established in May 1775 when some of the prominent representatives of the colonies, such as John Adams, Benjamin Franklin, Thomas Jefferson, and George Washington assembled to address the conflict with Britain. Within the year, the Congress would create the Continental Army and later, in July of 1776, issue the Declaration of Independence.

The Drafting and Ratification of the Declaration

Over twelve months past the Revolutionary War began, Richard Henry Lee of Virginia offered a formal resolution on independence. Thomas Jefferson, Benjamin Franklin, John Adams, Roger Sherman, and Robert R Livingston were appointed to form a committee on drafts of an official declaration. Jefferson was the main author of the Declaration of Independence; it took him a week and a half to write the first version.

Jefferson presented the document to his fellow committee members, as well as the rest of Congress which proposed changes, the most significant of which was the removal of the section denouncing the slave trade. In the end, on the 2nd of July, the Continental Congress approved the resolution to declare independence from Great Britain and on 4th of July they signed the final draft of the declaration. Looking at the historical analysis of the event, the first to sign the declaration was John Hancock who was the President of the Continental Congress after which other members of the congress signed.

The thirteen colonies in America had serious grievances with King George III and the British powers as stated in the Declaration of Independence. It proclaimed that all individuals have certain inalienable rights: right for protection of life, liberty, and property, and natural Rights of citizens for rebellion against oppression. The Declaration would be written and would enter history as one of the significant documents written in American history, setting the tone and philosophy of the new country. Far from the center of the colonial rebellion, word of the American victory soon spread and enticed other colonies to join the Revolutionary fight.

 The Revolutionary War and the Struggle for Freedom

America’s independence still had to be won on the battlefield. America was still an immature nation that had to struggle for its independence. After the Declaration, General George Washington with the assistance of the Continental Army triumphs over superior Britain forces. Some of the significant tapping points signifying the shift of power and determination were the Saratoga of 1777 and the Yorktown in 1781. The actual termination of the Revolutionary War was marked by the Treaty of 1783 which was signed after the British loss at Yorktown. America would later on adopt the Constitution and the Bill of Rights a few years after performing the basic structure of democracy in America.

But once a year, the Fourth of July, Americans join together with an enthusiasm of nationalism to celebrate the time when the colonies take up arms against England in 1776. People still celebrate the ‘76 spirit through the Independence Day celebration, fireworks and respect for the courageous and proud Americans who were involved in the fight for freedom.

Basically, the celebration of Independence Day involves several traditions and customs such as:

Patriotism: Since 1776 to the Present, Americans have marked this occasion in similar ways. It is celebrated through fireworks, music, feeding, parades and group celebrations of joy are characteristic of this summer holiday.Here are some of the most popular Fourth of July traditions celebrated across America every year:Based on these, herein follows a summary of the most recurrent fourth of July traditions that are executed yearly across the United States of America.

Backyard Barbecues and Picnics

It would be impossible to have a Fourth of July party without great taste and snacks, as well as outside fun. Celebrating through backyard barbecues, picnics, and potlucks has been part of the celebration during the early Independence Days, which started in the last 18th century. Thomas Jefferson, the third president, was documented as hosting one of the first July 4th barbecues in the White House in 1805 laying down what became traditional for presidents. Whether it is just frankfurters and burgers or ribs, potato salad, barbecue corn, and apple pie, food is intrinsic to the celebrations of this Fourth of July, or Independence Day.

Parades and Marches

Parades are among the formations of the anniversary celebration that took place in the initial Fourth of July after the adoption of the declaration in 1777. Bristol, Rhode Island, celebrates the nation’s birthday in a manner that has not been interrupted since 1785 and includes a daring parade. Larger American cities such as New York, Chicago, and Washington DC have more elaborate celebrations which are extravagant and last for several hours and involve floats, marching bands, horses, people dressed up in costumes and other troupes. Local parades of cities around the country come together to celebrate patriotism and support the military and past and present servicemen.

Fireworks Extravaganzas

No Independence Day celebrations can be considered complete without watching spectacular fireworks. The first celebrations or what the people called “illuminations’ ‘ took place in Philadelphia on the Fourth of July in 1777 which involved firing of fireworks and ringing of bells. The Inauguration of the Statue of Liberty was held in the New York Harbor in the year 1884 and had a boats parade and a lot of firecrackers. Urban areas in America now and then compete with each other every year in producing spectacular aerial acrobatics in concord with patriotic tunes. Major programs aired in Washington D.C., New York, Boston among other cities, attract hundreds of thousands of viewers. Another reason why many Americans also purchase the publicity is for lighting up the backyard.

Live Concerts, Festivals, and Baseball Grounds

The Fourth of July is a wonderful showcase of the American community and its love for music, from concerts in the park to gigantic popular music festivals.Some of the music celebrations that have been done for several years include Macy’s Fourth of July Fireworks Spectacular whereby a celebrated orchestra, the New York Philharmonic performs. Celebrations like the July 4th Boston Fireworks, Chicago Taste Fest, or The Fourth of July Nashville Let Freedom Sing. Scores of people turn up for the Independence Day celebration in Music City.. At the same time sports fans watch baseball games played in ballparks around the United States on July 4th for the ultimate combination of American activities.

Culture and Its symbols in America

Beyond the fireworks and festivities, July 4th is filled with history, symbolism, and traditions cherished by Americans:Despite all the bright pyrotechnics and lively dancing on the 4th of July, this day is steeped in history, meaning, and traditions Americans hold dear:

The Liberty Bell symbolizes liberty along with the Declaration of Independence.

Almost half a century people in Philadelphia gather to listen to the ringing of freedom’s bell on the fourth of July and this had been done for almost two centuries.The Liberty Bell currently housed at the Liberty Bell Centre weighs 2,080 pounds and had its first crack when it rang following its installation in 1753. Although there is no evidence that it was used to ring out the celebration of US independence on the 4 th of July, 1776, it has become the symbol of American Independence that the locals hold dear during the events of Independence day. Although some people like to celebrate the Fourth in some other city, Philadelphia is undeniably the most historical place to do this as it is where the first copy of the Declaration of Independence signed in the Independence Hall is kept.

As theme colors for Red, White and Blue Décor, the following should be used:

It’s not just a day but a symbol of freedom, independence, and unity, and every year on the Fourth of July, Americans celebrate with red, white, and blue homes, clothes, parades and more? Especially, the colors of the American flag that include red as representing valor and bravery, white as representing purity and innocence and blue as symbolizing justice, loyalty, and vigilance are essentials to the Independence Day decoration. In clothing such as the t-shirts, jerseys, and face painting as well as banners and bunting, Americans demonstrate their pride. Other common depictions are with the images of the Founding Fathers, marian – the symbol of Liberty, eagles and other representations of liberty.

Salutes to the Military

The concept of thanking and showing respect to those that protect America’s freedoms with the military has always been a part of Independence Day even in its present capacity as a federal holiday. The holiday was first officially observed in 1781 by the Continental Congress in the middle of the Revolutionary War to demonstrate the duality of the day as a symbol of liberty and the pursuit of such through battle. Fireworks, speeches, parades, concerts and other celebrations all have one common goal and that is to honor and celebrate members of all branches in the military. Furthermore, recruiting and commissioning activities, such as reenlistment or oath of enlistment ceremonies, are often conducted for active duty members and veterans on the Fourth of July.

Cross Country Road Trip Across the United States

Most Americans take time between the 4th July and the following Monday to enjoy themselves in what is considered the beginning of the summer holidays. Congested roads and closed airports prove how many households start the vacation season with a trip to the shore, the peaks, the fun fair, or to grandparents. The American tradition of road travel is still most preferred, with opinion polls placing the figure of US citizens on the road during the festive season at over 40 million. Road trips make it possible for tourists to sight rollings and picturesque landscapes of America right from the sea to the shining sea by car.

How do Americans remember 1776 and the creation of liberty on the Fourth of July through the annual customs of the year, including new innovations that embody the red, white and blue of America? Independence Day is the time when people in big cities or small towns come together to embrace history, togetherness, good food and beautiful fireworks in honor of the good old USA. This is the story of how the American revolution was birthed and from year to year we celebrate the first act of defiance against tyranny on the 4th of July.

Well, grab the T-bone steaks, light up the BBQ pit, wear that star-spangled outfit, and fly the flag, baby! Across the USA, this special day represents independence, families as well as a vibrant and beautiful display of fireworks as far as the eyes can behold. Happy independence anniversary to America and here is to its past, present, and upcoming years and accomplishments.

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