The average age of those who signed the Declaration of Independence was forty-five. The oldest signer was Benjamin Franklin at the age of seventy years old. The youngest was Edward Rutledge, a lawyer from South Carolina who was only twenty-six at the time.

The signers of the Declaration of Independence had various occupations: Twenty-four were lawyers, eleven were merchants, nine  were farmers and plantation owners.

Only two signers of the Declaration of Independence later served as President of the United States, John Adams and Thomas Jefferson.

The names of the signers of the Declaration of Independence were kept secret from the public for more than six months in order to protect the signers from any danger.

In the 2004 movie, "National Treasure", it is alleged that there is a secret map on the back of the Declaration of Independence. I really don't like to burst your bubble, but there is NO map!

HOWEVER, there IS something on the back of the signed parchment!

It's a label at the bottom of the parchment which reads,
"Original Declaration of Independence dated 4th July 1776"

No one knows who wrote this, but it was probably added as a label when the document was rolled up for storage many years ago.

In the summer of 1776, when the Declaration was signed, the population of the nation is estimated to have been about 2.5 million. As of today, the population of the United States is more than 328 million! 

Did you know that Thomas Jefferson and John Adams both died on July 4, 1826? They died within five hours of each other! This date was the fiftieth anniversary of our country’s birth. James Monroe, the fifth president, died five years later on July 4, 1831.

The Declaration has only left the capital twice. The first time was when the British attacked Washington during the War of 1812, and the second time was during World War II from late 1941 until the fall of 1944 when it was stored at Fort Knox.

The stars on the original American flag were in a circle so all of the thirteen colonies would appear equal

The thirteen American Colonies consisted of: Delaware, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Georgia, New York, Connecticut, Maryland, Massachusetts Bay, South Carolina, New Hampshire, Virginia, North Carolina, Rhode Island and Providence Plantations.

Other countries, including Denmark, England, Norway, Portugal and Sweden, also celebrate the Fourth of July because many of their citizens moved to the U.S. They also celebrate the holiday simply to attract American tourists!

Every 4th of July the Liberty Bell in Philadelphia is tapped (not rung) thirteen times in honor of the original thirteen colonies.

A one gun salute for each state in the United States is fired at noon on Independence Day by all military bases which have the capability to carry out such a privilege. This tradition is called, "Salute to the Union”.

According to the American Pyrotechnics Association around 15,000 fireworks displays will take place on the Fourth of July holiday. Though pricing varies, most small towns spend about $8,000 to $15,000 for a fireworks display, with larger cities going into the millions, like the Boston Pops Fireworks Spectacular which costs around $2.5 million!

Approximately one hundred and fifty million hot dogs will be consumed by Americans on the Fourth of July! According to the National Hot Dog and Sausage Council, that amount of dogs can stretch from Washington D.C. to Los Angeles more than five times!

Today, we eat burgers and hot dogs by the dozen on Independence Day, however, our founding fathers feasted on completely different foods to celebrate the nation’s birthday.

For their Fourth of July meal in 1776, John Adams and his wife indulged in turtle soup, poached salmon with egg sauce, green peas, and boiled new potatoes followed by Indian pudding for dessert.

Before cars ruled the roadway, the Fourth of July was the most miserable day of the year for horses due to being tormenting by all of the noise and by the firecrackers which the boys and girls threw at them!

The word patriotism comes from the Latin word "patria" which means "homeland" or "fatherland".

As of today, you can find The Declaration of Independence, along with The Constitution and The Bill of Rights displayed in The Rotunda of the National Archives Building in downtown Washington, DC.

I hope you enjoyed reading all the facts which I was able to dig up as much as I did!

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Whether you plan on having a barbecue with family and friends. Attending a parade. Watching a spectator firework display. Or all of the above! Let's all remember to take some time to give thanks to the Lord for ALL the MANY freedoms we are privileged to enjoy in this great country which we call America!

"Where liberty is,
there is
my country."
Benjamin Franklin

history insider