As we wrap up this holiday weekend, from my family to yours, I hope that you have enjoyed your July 4th holiday. May you continue to enjoy the summer season here in the United States. -Carole Copeland Thomas
My daughter and son in law came yesterday from Connecticut for the July 4th Holiday and to give their children big hugs after a one week absence. My son in law showed off his handy skills. He repaired my leaky refrigerator, changed the burned out batteries on my squeaky smoke detectors, and gave me advice on other household projects. We combined a cookout with an inflatable pool party for the grandkids and danced around the house with our American flags. My daughters, Michelle and Lorna, used their skills to help our production flow like magic. Love this holiday. Love my family! God Bless America!!
Here are TEN Things You Might Not Know About July 4th:
1. On this day in 1826, former Presidents Thomas Jefferson and John Adams, who were fellow Patriots, die on the same day within five hours of each other. They were founders of America who were friends, adversaries and friends again in the end. On July 4, 1826, at the age of 90, Adams lay on his deathbed while the country celebrated Independence Day. His last words were Thomas Jefferson still survives. He was mistaken: Jefferson had died five hours earlier at Monticello at the age of 82.
2. Only two people actually signed the Declaration of Independence on July 4th: John Hancock and Charles Thomson, secretary of Congress. Most of the others signed on August 2nd.
3. One US president, Calvin Coolidge, was born on July 4. So were Nathaniel Hawthorne, Neil Simon, George Steinbrenner, and Malia Obama (President Obama’s older daughter).
4. July 4th wasn't deemed a federal holiday until 1870, nearly 100 years after the nation was founded.
5. Fireworks have been a major part of Fourth of July since the earliest celebrations. In 1884, miners blew up the post office in Swan, Colorado, because it wasn't supplied with fireworks.
6. Other countries — including Denmark, England, Norway, Portugal and Sweden — celebrate the Fourth of July because many of their citizens moved to the US or simply to attract American tourists.
7. Four Star General Benjamin O. Davis, the first African American to become an Air Force General, died at age 89 on July 4, 2002. He was the fourth African American to graduate from West Point. He led the Tuskegee Air Men. His father, Benjamin O. Davis. Sr. was the first African American Army General. He trained at Tuskegee at the same time with my own father.
8. The July 4, 2016 holiday kicks off the 200th Anniversary of the incorporation of the African Methodist Episcopal Church (AME). A mural of founding Bishop Richard Allen was unveiled today in Philadelphia, and his statue was unveiled yesterday. More than 20,000 will attend the 50th General Conference of the AME Church in Philadelphia from July 6th through July 13th. I will be in that mix in the next few days. That’s my denomination.
9. The seeds of the Civil War actually started before the country was actually formed. The Declaration of Independence was adopted on this day. And a section denouncing the slave trade was deleted.
10. On July 4, 1960 the 50-star U.S. flag made its debut in Philadelphia.
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Carole Copeland Thomas is a 27 year speaker, trainer and consultant specializing in global diversity, empowerment, multiculturalism and leadership issues.