What the Fourth of July Celebration is About (For Youngsters Who Don’t Know)

Battle of Long Island

American soldiers fighting the British in 1776.

HAPPY 4TH OF JULY WEEKEND, WEB TRAVELERS — It hath begun, the travel day for 4th of July get2gethers. Many have taken this day off to celebrate our country’s 239th anniversary of independence from Britain, who ruled the 13 colonies of colonial America.

Did you know that 58% of Americans don’t know what country America declared its independence from?



Briefly, Colonists were fed up with heavy taxation and British rule by the “tyrant” King George III and wished to create a new country independent of Britain where they would govern themselves.


America over 2 hundred years ago was a vast, untamed wilderness, with the western half unknown and unexplored. So fighting happened on America’s East Coast where the 13 colonies were.


The war, called The Revolutionary War, raged April 1775 to September 1783 — 8 years. Britain sent ship after ship of “red coats” to fight the “rebel” colonists on our ground — total Americans killed in the fight estimated to be as high as 70,000. The colonists created a formal document of independence for King George in July 1776, entitled “The Declaration of Independence,” officially starting the war (although fighting began a year before).

Battle of New Orleans

md-continental-officer1Seven years later, the Treaty of Paris, signed in Paris by representatives of King George III of Great Britain and representatives of the United States of America on September 3, 1783, ending the American Revolutionary War. George Washington became the first president of the new country.

Back in that era soldiers carried “muskets,” which had to be reloaded with gun powder after each shot, and muskets would only work on targets within one hundred yards. So the armies fought in groups of men, organized as regiments, at close range. The enemy regiments would line up face-to-face and then charge with bayonets attached to the muskets. So it was hand-to-hand combat. Our American ancestors were a brave lot indeed.

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