Fourth of July in Pop Culture History

July 4 History, Trivia and Fun Facts

July 4 History Highlights

  • When Americans talk about the day they declared independence from Great Britain, they don’t say the actual date the American way (July 4th), they say it the British way (4th of July)
  • July 4, 1918 Birthday (fictional) Steve Rogers,  Captain America, Marvel Comics, MCU
  • July 4, 2032 (fiction) John Connor was killed by a T-850 in Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines, Film
  • If you were born on July 4th,
    You were likely conceived the week of… October 11th (prior year)

Traditional July 4 Information

  • 1826 – John Adams and Thomas Jefferson passed away
  • America The Beautiful by Katherine Lee Bates was published
  • July 4, 1918 Birthday (fictional) Captain America, Marvel Cinematic Universe
  • 1939 – Lou Gehrig, gave his famous “The luckiest man on the face of the earth” speech and announced his retirement from major league baseball.
  • July 4, 2032 (fiction) John Connor was killed by a T-850 in Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines, Film

U.S.A. Facts:
Capital: Washington, D.C.
Motto: “In God we trust”
Anthem: The Star-Spangled Banner
Bird: Bald eagle
Flower: Rose

This holiday is marked by fireworks, barbecues and parades. Previously called “rockets,” the term “fireworks” was not established until 1777. Later fireworks that made noise were invented and dubbed “firecrackers” and in 1880 sparklers were created.

Calvin Coolidge was born July 4, 1872
John Adams and Thomas Jefferson both died July 4, 1826
Last Words: John Adams; ‘Thomas Jefferson still survives.’
Last Word: Thomas Jefferson; ‘This is the fourth?’
James Monroe died July 4, 1836 in Richmond, Virginia

On July 4, 1776, the Continental Congress approved the Declaration of Independence, solidifying the U.S.’s independence from Britain. Although it had been celebrated in one way or another since 1777, July 4 was declared a federal legal holiday in 1941. Around 1791, we started calling July 4th “Independence Day”.

Only two people signed the Declaration of Independence on July 4, 1776: John Hancock and Charles Thomson. The rest were mostly added on August 2nd of that year. The last person to sign it, Thomas McKean, got around to it in 1781.

When Americans talk about the day they declared independence from Great Britain, the don’t say the actual date the American way (July 4th), they say it the British way (4th of July)

It says a lot for American Spirit & Optimism that we celebrate the day we “declared” independence and not the day, more than 7 years later, when we actually won it. Happy Independence Day!

July 4 is…

Alice in Wonderland Day
Independence Day
Indivisible Day
Jackfruit Day
National Barbecue Day/ National Barbecued Spareribs Day
National Caesar Salad Day
National Country Music Day
Sidewalk Egg Frying Day

July 4th Quotes

You’re a grand old flag! You’re a high-flying flag, And forever in peace may you wave. You’re the emblem of the land I love, The home of the free and the brave. Ev’ry heart beats true ‘Neath the Red, White and Blue,’ Where there’s never a boast or brag. But should auld acquaintance be forgot, Keep your eye on the grand old flag.
– George M. Cohan

“I haven’t always done a good job, and I haven’t always been successful – but I know that I have tried.”
– George Steinbrenner

“Happiness is a butterfly, which when pursued, is always just beyond your grasp, but which, if you will sit down quietly, may alight upon you.”
– Nathaniel Hawthorne

“Yeah, yeah. I, I don’t think I’m always right. But I don’t think young people are always right, either.”
– Rube Goldberg

“Never underestimate the stimulation of eccentricity.”
– Neil Simon

“Surround yourself with amazingly intelligent men and women. The people I work with not only are smarter than I am, possessing both intellectual and emotional intelligence, but also share my determination to succeed. I will not make an important decision without them.”
– George Steinbrenner

“Maturity is the ability to do a job whether you’re supervised or not; finish a job once it’s started; carry money without spending it; and the ability to bear an injustice without wanting to get even.”
– Abigail Van Buren

Sometimes in our lives we all have pain.
We all have sorrow.
But if we are wise we know that there’s always tomorrow.
– Bill Withers

“Where liberty dwells, there is my country.”
– Benjamin Franklin

“When an American says that he loves his country, he means not only that he loves the New England hills, the prairies glistening in the sun, the wide and rising plains, the great mountains, and the sea. He means that he loves an inner air, an inner light in which freedom lives and in which a man can draw the breath of self-respect.”
– Adlai Stevenson

“My God! How little do my countrymen know what precious blessings they are in possession of, and which no other people on earth enjoy!”
– Thomas Jefferson

“Many public-school children seem to know only two dates: 1492 and 4th of July; and as a rule, they don’t know what happened on either occasion.”
– Mark Twain

And I’m proud to be an American,
where at least I know I’m free.
And I won’t forget the men who died,
who gave that right to me.
– Lee Greenwood

“There is nothing wrong with America that cannot be cured by what is right with America.”
– William J. Clinton

“Ours is the only country deliberately founded on a good idea.”
– John Gunther

“I believe in America because we have great dreams – and because we have the opportunity to make those dreams come true.”
– Wendell L. Wilkie

“If you take advantage of everything America has to offer, there’s nothing you can’t accomplish.”
– Geraldine Ferraro

“We dare not forget that we are the heirs of that first revolution.”
– John F. Kennedy

“Our country is not the only thing to which we owe our allegiance. It is also owed to justice and to humanity. Patriotism consists not in waving the flag, but in striving that our country shall be righteous as well as strong.”
– James Bryce

“Anyway, it’s not a right/left issue. It’s a right/wrong issue and America has constantly been on the side of what’s right. When it comes down to it, this is about keeping faith with the idea of America, because America is an idea, isn’t it? I mean, Ireland is a great country, but it is not an idea. Great Britain is a great country, it is not an idea. That’s how we see you around the world, as one of the greatest ideas in human history, right up there with the Renaissance, crop rotations, and the Beatles’ White album.

“The idea, the American idea, it is an idea. The idea is that you and me are created equal, and will ensure that an economic recession need not become an equality rescission. Life is meant to the enjoyed. If we have justice, dignity, leave it to us, we?ll do the rest. This country was the first to claw its way out of darkness and put that on paper, and God love you for it, because these aren’t just American ideas anymore. There’s no copyright on them. You brought them into the world. It is a wide world now. I know Americans say they have a bit of the world in them, and you do, but the thing is, the world has a bit of America in it too. These truths, your truths, they are self-evident in us?”
-Bono

July 4 Birthdays

1790 – George Everest, Welsh geographer, Mt Everest namesake (died in 1866)
1804 – Nathaniel Hawthorne, American novelist and short-story writer (died in 1864)
1826 – Stephen Foster, American songwriter (died in 1864)
1872 – Calvin Coolidge, American politician, 30th President of the United States (died in 1933)
1883 – Rube Goldberg, American sculptor, cartoonist, and engineer (died in 1970)
1898 – Gertrude Lawrence, British actress, singer, and dancer (died in 1952)
1910 – Gloria Stuart, American actress (died in 2010)
1911 – Mitch Miller, American singer and producer (died in 2010)
1918 – Pauline Phillips, American journalist, created Dear Abby (died in 2013)
1920 – Leona Helmsley, American businesswoman (died in 2007)
1924 – Eva Marie Saint, American actress
1927 – Gina Lollobrigida, Italian actress
1927 – Neil Simon, American playwright and screenwriter (died in 2018)
1930 – George Steinbrenner, American businessman (died in 2010)
1931 – Stephen Boyd, Northern Ireland-born American actor (died in 1977)
1938 – Bill Withers, American singer-songwriter (died in 2020)
1943 – Geraldo Rivera, American lawyer, journalist, and author
1946 – Michael Milken, American businessman, felon and philanthropist
1954 – Morganna, American model and actress
1962 – Pam Shriver, American tennis player and sportscaster
1995 – Post Malone, American singer, rapper

July 4 History

1054 – A supernova was seen for several months by Chinese, and Arabs near the star Zeta Tauri – its remnants form the Crab Nebula.

1776 – The United States Declaration of Independence was adopted by the Second Continental Congress.

1803 – The Louisiana Purchase was announced.

1826 – John Adams, second president of the United States, died the same day as Thomas Jefferson, third president of the United States, on the fiftieth anniversary of the adoption of the United States’ Declaration of Independence. The two founding fathers did not get along during their careers.

1827 – Slavery was abolished in New York State.

1855 – The first edition of Walt Whitman’s book of poems, Leaves of Grass, was published.

1862 – Lewis Carroll told 10-year-old Alice Liddell a story that was the basis for Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, published in 1865.

1910 – African-American boxer Jack Johnson knocked out white boxer Jim Jeffries in a heavyweight boxing match.

1911 – A heatwave occurred in the northeastern United States, killing 380 people in eleven days.

July 4, 1918 Birthday (fictional) Steve Rogers, Captain America, Marvel Cinematic Universe

1946 – The Philippines gained full independence from the United States.

1950 – Radio Free Europe was first broadcast.

1951 – William Shockley announces the invention of the junction transistor.

1961 – Soviet Submarine k-19 Nuclear Underwater Disaster

1964 – #1 Hit July 4, 1964 – July 17, 1964: The Beach Boys – I Get Around

1966 – US President Lyndon B. Johnson signed the Freedom of Information Act into United States law, effective in 1967.

1971 – Koko the Gorilla was born in the San Francisco Zoo

1976 – The Clash performed publicly for the first time at The Black Swan, in Sheffield, England.

1987 – Former Gestapo chief Klaus “Butcher of Lyon” Barbie was convicted of crimes against humanity and sentenced to life imprisonment.

1992 – #1 Hit July 4, 1992 – August 7, 1992: Sir Mix-A-Lot – Baby Got Back

1997 – NASA’s Pathfinder space probe landed on the surface of Mars.

2004 – The cornerstone of the Freedom Tower was laid on the World Trade Center site in New York City.

2005 – The Deep Impact collider struck the comet Tempel 1.

2009 – The Statue of Liberty’s crown reopened to the public after eight years of closure due to security concerns following the September 11 attacks.

2012 – The discovery of particles consistent with the “God particle” – Higgs boson at the Large Hadron Collider were announced at CERN.

2016 – The Juno probe arrived at Jupiter.

July 4, 2032 (fiction) John Connor was killed by a T-850 in Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines, Film

July 4, next year (fiction) Mankind will fight off alien invaders, Independence Day, Film

Today’s Random Trivia and Shower Thoughts

Canada and the US should just combine their independence days into one four-day binge drinking, fireworks, and bbq bonanza.

In Call of Duty Advanced Warfare during the single-player campaign the player is prompted to press F to pay respects at a funeral.

STURGEON’S REVELATION: 90 percent of everything is crud. (not crap as is often misquoted)

The original M-80 was used by the U. S. military to simulate explosions and used 3,000 mg of powder but is illegal without a federal license. The legal ones sold as fireworks only have 50 mg of powder, or 1/60th as much as the military version.

The Great Wall of China is 13,170.7 miles long, over five times the distance from LA to NYC.

For most of his reign, England’s King George III had the official title of “George the Third, by the Grace of God, King of Great Britain, France, and Ireland, Defender of the Faith, and so forth”

“Here it is, your moment of Zen” – Jon Stewart (The Daily Show)

Michael Meyers wore a painted Halloween mask of William Shatner (Captain Kirk) in “Halloween.”

It is illegal to use the US flag on a trademark

Squirrels will pretend to bury nuts if they’re being watched to deceive potential thieves.

They say the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree, so how did this one get all the way here in my lunch box!? This crazy apple, I swear haha!

Nolan Bushnell, the founder of Atari, also founded Chuck E. Cheese.

Useless Pronunciation: G as in gnostic

“O’clock” traces its roots back to “of the clokke” in Middle English.

“Why so serious?” – The Joker (Heath Ledger) #moviequotes

Literacy rates for men in colonial New England was 85% on the eve of the American Revolution.

“If life is just a highway, then the soul is just a car. And objects in the rearview mirror may appear closer than they are.” #songlyrics

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