Independence Day 2018 and 2019 in the United States
Independence Day is a federal holiday in the United States every 4 July. It celebrates the date when the original 13 colonies declared independence from Great Britain in 1776. In 2018, Independence Day falls on a Wednesday. It is popularly known as “Fourth of July.”
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The Declaration of Independence
The Declaration of Independence was approved unanimously by delegates representing the 13 American colonies at the Second Continental Congress. This significant step came more than one year after the beginning of the American Revolutionary War, and conveyed in no uncertain terms the grievances of the American people against King George III and the British parliament.
After this clarion call, militia and continental army soldiers would continue to battle British forces for another seven years until the Treaty of Paris was signed in 1783. This treaty saw Britain recognize the sovereignty of the United States and end the war.
Fourth of July activities
It is common for most cities and towns in the United States to have fireworks displays on Independence Day. Although the purchase of fireworks is illegal in many states, most communities tolerate private fireworks displays on this day. Parades, fairs, carnivals, concerts, and ceremonies also take place during this holiday.
Families frequently have reunions featuring barbecues and small fireworks displays. Families also enjoy playing sports on this public holiday like volleyball, softball, and horseshoes. Many people display flags on their lawns to honor the nation.
The Fourth of July is the United States’ official birthday, so other countries do not observe it although many countries have similar holidays such as France’s Bastille Day or Mexico’s Grito de Dolores’ celebration.
Independence Day is the second of three summer federal holidays. It comes in the middle of summer when much of the United States is sweltering. The Fourth of July is a beloved patriotic holiday when many people take vacations to the mountains, seashore, and national parks for fishing, camping, and water sports.
Since Independence Day is a a federal and state legal holiday throughout the nation, all United States federal, state, and local government buildings are closed. Most factories and other companies are closed and their employees typically receive the day off with pay (dependant on their individual contracts).
Some service-related companies remain open during the holiday, including restaurants, stores, department stores, and vehicle repair shops. Recreational businesses and tourist attractions that cater to people with leisure time usually enjoy brisk business.