Independence Day Part 2...

Real Estate Agent with KW Evolution - Topsfield, MA 92593-B

The New England Historical Society provided this interesting information regarding Independence Day.


"12 Fascinating Facts About Independence Day"

Independence Day from the get-go has been a rowdy holiday with ringing bells, gunfire, cannon fire, fireworks, feasting, speeches and toasts.

Over the years, people tried to turn it into something else: a platform for temperance speeches, a chance for immigrants to express their ‘American-ness,’ a ‘safe-and-sane’ holiday. But it always seems to revert to a rowdy celebration.

Here then, is a list of 12 fascinating facts about the Independence Day.


It didn’t really happen this way. Declaration of Independence by John Trumbull.

John Adams got the date wrong. In a letter to his wife Abigail from Philadelphia on July 3, 1776, he wrote, “The Second Day of July 1776, will be the most memorable Epocha, in the History of America.” You can understand his mistake, since the Continental Congress approved independence on July 2. And all the signers of the Declaration of Independence didn’t exactly gather around the parchment and sign at once. Some had left Philadelphia on July 4, 1776. Moreover, the Declaration didn’t get printed with all the names of the signers until January 1777, by Mary Katherine Goddard in Baltimore.


Boston fireworks, 2011.

Fireworks go all the way back to 1777, when Boston and Philadelphia held the first displays. The Continental Congress authorized the fireworks in Philadelphia. And in Boston, “Col. Crafts illuminated his park on the commons, threw several shells, and exhibited a number of fireworks.”


Charles Francis Adams

The Adams family participated in official Independence Day celebrations for 116 consecutive years. It started from the time John signed the Declaration of Independence in 1776 and ended in 1892, when Charles Francis Adams, Jr., gave a speech at the First Church in Quincy, Mass.



George Washington by Gilbert Stuart

During the 19th century, people loved to drink patriotic toasts on the Independence celebrations. Tipplers carefully prepared the toasts and often published them in the local newspaper. They frequently toasted George Washington. For example, a toast from Lexington, Mass., in 1814, went like this: “The memory of Washington. May his name no more be profaned by Hypocrites, as that of Jesus has been by the Jesuits.”


Massachusetts State House from the Boston Common

On the Fourth of July in 1795, Paul Revere and Gov. Sam Adams laid the cornerstone for the Massachusetts State House in Boston. They also buried a copper time capsule. It contained a pine tree shilling coin from 1652, a copper medal engraved with an image of George Washington, several newspapers and a silver plate thought to be engraved by Paul Revere. State officials opened the time capsule in 2014.



Young Daniel Webster

On the Fourth of July 1800, Daniel Webster launched his political career as an 18-year-old Dartmouth junior. He was chosen to deliver a speech at the college because of his reputation as a speaker and debater. In the speech he praised the veterans of the Revolution, George Washington and the unifying authority of the U.S. Constitution.


Thomas Jefferson

John Adams died on the 50th anniversary of the signing of the Declaration of Independence. His last words were “Jefferson still survives.” He got it wrong; Jefferson died five hours earlier. Only one signer of the Declaration still lived in 1826: Charles Carroll of Carrollton, Md., who died six years later at the age of 95.


Aftermath of the Great Portland Fire.

A Fourth of July firecracker in 1866 started the Great Portland Fire in Maine. The conflagration, the worst to date in the United States, burned 1800 buildings. It left 10,000 homeless and killed two. Fireworks, though, didn’t cause as many Fourth of July fatalities as toy guns. The toy bullets — blank cartridges, actually — pierced the skin and caused tetanus, the leading cause of Independence Day deaths in the 19th century.



Henry Ward Beecher speaking at Woodstock, Conn, President Grant seated. From a Harper’s Weekly engraving courtesy Library of Congress.


Starting in 1870, Henry C. Bowen, a businessman, hosted the country’s largest Fourth of July party in Woodstock, Conn., at his Roseland Cottage. The event featured many, many, many speeches; so many, that Supreme Court Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes tried to get out of going in 1877. Bowen didn’t drink, and President Ulysses S. Grant had to sneak a cocktail on the porch at the first party in 1870..

The Boston Pops plays Stars and Stripes Forever.


The Boston Pops Orchestra has played Stars and Stripes Forever at the end of its concerts since 1899, two years after John Philip Sousa composed it. Arthur Fiedler included it in the first Independence Day Pops concert on the Esplanade in 1929. The Pops has played it ever since, the flag always dropping in the final moments of the piece. As many as 500,000 people show up for the concert.


Americanization Day poster


Future Supreme Court Justice Louis Brandeis kicked off the first Americanization Day with a Fourth of July speech in 1915 at Boston’s Faneuil Hall. Americanization Day, an attempt to crowd out Independence Day, responded to nearly two decades of increasing immigration, a sore spot for many Americans. The Americanization Day movement set about to reshape the day’s image around themes of immigrants embracing American culture. It didn’t last.


Calvin Coolidge, Jr.

The saddest Independence Day in the White House was probably in 1924, when President Calvin Coolidge spent most of the day at the bedside of his 16-year-old son. Calvin Coolidge, Jr., had developed septic poisoning after he played tennis without socks and it caused a blister that got infected. He died on July 7.


Well, there you have it, 12 interesting facts you may have never known about Independence Day

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I pray that God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ will be kind to you and bless you with peace

2 Thessalonians 1:2



Broker Sales Associate

KELLER WILLIAMS REALTY - Topsfield/Newburyport

49 Main Street
Topsfield, MA 01983
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Comments (23)

Ron and Alexandra Seigel
Napa Consultants - Carpinteria, CA
Luxury Real Estate Branding, Marketing & Strategy


Now that was a very interesting post.  Thank you for sharing these little known facts.  Happy Independence Day to you. A

Jul 04, 2021 10:46 AM
Joan Cox
House to Home, Inc. - Denver Real Estate - 720-231-6373 - Denver, CO
Denver Real Estate - Selling One Home at a Time

Doug, I really did not like history, but know it is important..... thanks for the lesson!  Happy 4th to you.

Jul 04, 2021 11:11 AM
George Souto
George Souto NMLS #65149 FHA, CHFA, VA Mortgages - Middletown, CT
Your Connecticut Mortgage Expert

Doug Dawes Happy 4th of July.  I hope you and your family have a relaxing and very enjoyable day!!!

Jul 04, 2021 11:19 AM
Michael Jacobs
Pasadena, CA
Los Angeles Pasadena 818.516.4393

Hello Doug - there was a couple of things I recall from your list  but many(most) were new-to-me.  Thank you for sharing them.  

Jul 04, 2021 02:29 PM
Mark Don McInnes, Sandpoint
Sandpoint Realty LLC - Sandpoint, ID
North Idaho Real Estate - 208-255.6227

Interesting read and has taken me way past my alotted time in AR this afternoon.  Enjoy the rest of your 4th.  mark

Jul 04, 2021 03:08 PM
Ed Silva
Mapleridge Realty, CT 203-206-0754 - Waterbury, CT
Central CT Real Estate Broker Serving all equally

I hope you and your family had a safe and pleasant July 4 Holiday.

Jul 04, 2021 05:48 PM
Kathy Streib
Room Service Home Staging - Delray Beach, FL
Home Stager - Palm Beach County,FL -561-914-6224

Doug- I loved reading these facts!!!  Hope that you had a very Happy Fourth of July!!!!

Jul 04, 2021 07:07 PM
John Pusa
Berkshire Hathaway Home Services Crest - Glendale, CA
Your All Time Realtor With Exceptional Service

Hello Doug Dawes thank you for the great educational post and facts on the history of Independence Day! Happy 4th of July Independence Day!

Jul 05, 2021 11:25 AM
Doug Dawes
KW Evolution - Topsfield, MA - Georgetown, MA
Your Personal Realtor®

Hi Nina Hollander, Broker 

The Historical Society has tons of information of the early day about our soon to be independent country

Jul 06, 2021 09:07 AM
Doug Dawes
KW Evolution - Topsfield, MA - Georgetown, MA
Your Personal Realtor®

Hi Will Hamm 

It rained most of the weekend. Monday was a good weather day. BUT we BBQ even in the

Jul 06, 2021 09:08 AM
Doug Dawes
KW Evolution - Topsfield, MA - Georgetown, MA
Your Personal Realtor®

Glad you enjoyed the post Rocky Dickerson We did enjoy our weekend, thank you

Jul 06, 2021 09:09 AM
Doug Dawes
KW Evolution - Topsfield, MA - Georgetown, MA
Your Personal Realtor®

A. Glad you and Ron found the post of interest Ron and Alexandra Seigel 

Given the times we live in Independence Day becomes even more important

Jul 06, 2021 09:11 AM
Doug Dawes
KW Evolution - Topsfield, MA - Georgetown, MA
Your Personal Realtor®

Hi Joan Cox 

I understand your view. If there's any history to know it is the U.S> formation and founding documents. I hope you Independence Day was a good one

Jul 06, 2021 09:13 AM
Doug Dawes
KW Evolution - Topsfield, MA - Georgetown, MA
Your Personal Realtor®

Same to you George Souto 

It was a good day, rainy but good

Jul 06, 2021 09:14 AM
Doug Dawes
KW Evolution - Topsfield, MA - Georgetown, MA
Your Personal Realtor®

I am glad you found some new facts on our history Michael Jacobs also I pray your day was enjoyable

Jul 06, 2021 09:15 AM
Doug Dawes
KW Evolution - Topsfield, MA - Georgetown, MA
Your Personal Realtor®

Hahahahaha Mark Don McInnes, Sandpoint 

You shoulda started with We had a rainy weekend and are now over an inch above normal for July

Jul 06, 2021 09:16 AM
Doug Dawes
KW Evolution - Topsfield, MA - Georgetown, MA
Your Personal Realtor®

Ed Silva we did and I trust you and your family did too

Jul 06, 2021 09:17 AM
Doug Dawes
KW Evolution - Topsfield, MA - Georgetown, MA
Your Personal Realtor®

4th of July weekend was a very wet one Kathy Streib BUT we enjoyed the Day. Hope you did too

Jul 06, 2021 09:18 AM
Doug Dawes
KW Evolution - Topsfield, MA - Georgetown, MA
Your Personal Realtor®

John Pusa 

SO glad you enjoyed the post and trust your 4th was a good one too

Jul 06, 2021 09:19 AM
Georgie Hunter R(S) 58089
Hawai'i Life Real Estate Brokers - Haiku, HI
Maui Real Estate sales and lifestyle info

Well that really was interesting!  Thanks for posting these facts.  Funny about the date being wrong!

Jul 07, 2021 10:52 PM