July 4th, celebrated as Independence day in the United States, is a day when Americans celebrate the birth of their nation. Although many would argue that America was born much earlier, it was with the signing of the declaration of Independence on July 4th, 1776 that America declared itself a sovereign nation, free of governance by Great Britain.
Over the more than two centuries since independence was declared, America has changed dramatically. Today, the celebration of Independence Day has become a full blown, red, white and blue draped outpouring of love for country and our fellow man. On this one day, differences are put aside and we are all Americans.
Let's take a look at some interesting statistics relating to the United States and it's independence celebration.
United States Population Growth
Fireworks are a staple of almost any municipal 4th of July celebration. But the biggest explosion of all may be the stunning growth of America's population since 1776. In the beginning, America had approximately 2.5 million citizens - less than a great many of America's cities have today. But as of July 4th, 2014 - the countries population has increased to 318.4 million - give or take a few hundred thousand.
And Speaking of Explosions...
There's no doubt that Americans love "the rockets' red glare". In 2013 United States imported $203.4 million dollars worth of fireworks from China. Interestingly, the U.S. also produced and exported fireworks, though at a much smaller scale - exporting a little over $781,000 worth of the entertaining combustibles.
Here's a great 4th of July fireworks display we found on YouTube. Enjoy!
Another patriotic import that shocks some...
Fireworks aren't the only patriotic thing that America imports from China in large quantities. Would you believe that the USA also imported more around $4 million worth of American flags from China in 2013? Many of these American flags were purchased by businesses who wanted to create a patriotic impression while spending a minimal amount of money.
Many would consider this unpatriotic. For these purists, the good news is, there are numerous manufacturers in the United States who still make the finest quality American flags that money can buy.
What about the music?
Music has a powerful emotion impact on many. And patriotic songs can have a particularly strong effect since they often have the power to focus our minds on the love we feel for our country. For musicians and writers, creating a memorable patriotic tune can be a ticket to immortality. From Francis Scott Key to the writers of today, a great song can easily become a national treasure.
So to wrap up our little trip down patriot lane, we'll close with this version of God Bless America with some very moving images. And if you get a little misty eyed while watching, don't worry, it only means that you are a true American! Happy fourth of July!
Facts and figures quoted on this page are from Census.gov.