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Presidential Coincidence US Military History

US Military History Throughout The Years

Short bits of history you know, and some you may not!

  • Just Need A Signature: Thursday, July 4, 1776 – John Hancock, President of Congress, signs the Declaration of Independence. As the document had been voted on and approved his signature was the only one required. This copy of the Declaration has been lost, possibly destroyed from the process of copying it for distribution among the fledgling US. These copies are the known as the Dunlap broadsides, after the printer who made them. It is estimated that around 200 were made, with one being sent to Britain and General George Washington would read it to his troops on the 9th of July. The famous hand written Declaration of Independence, which is held on display in the National Archives, was not signed till 2 August 1776. That date is debated, and it is possible that is was in fact signed on the 4th.
  • The Bristol Fourth: Monday, July 4, 1785 – The Bristol Fourth of July Parade, in Rhode Island, is the longest continuously running 4th of July celebration. Festivities begin on Flag Day, 14 June, and reach their climax on 4 July. The parade held on Independence Day is the oldest annual parade in the US. The event has given the city of Bristol the nickname “America’s most patriotic town”. While the parade has been canceled several times, celebrations have been held on every 4th of July.
  • An Extra Ration: Wednesday, July 4, 1804 – Lewis and Clark, of the Corps of Discovery, would hold the first 4th of July celebrations west of the Mississippi. They would start the day with a shot from the bow gun on their boat and end it with one as well. An extra ration of whiskey was issued to the expeditions men as in celebration.
  • Summoning Citizens: Monday, July 8, 1776 – The Liberty Bell in Philadelphia rings out from the State House, summoning citizens in the city. Colonel John Nixon would read aloud to the crowd for the first time in public the Declaration of Independence.
  • Quasi-War: Saturday, July 7, 1798 – The USS Delaware captures the French privateer ship, La Croyable. This would be the first action of the Quasi-War between the US and France. The war is called “quasi” because war was never officially declared and it was almost entirely fought in waters across the world. The war in part began after the US refused to continue to pay debts incurred during the Revolutionary War, which was massively supported and funded by France. The US reasoned that since the French Monarchy and regime no longer existed, they did not have to pay. The Quasi-War would last till 1800, being brought to conclusion with the Convention of 1800.
  • Presidential Coincidence: Tuesday, July 4, 1826 – Three former US Presidents have died on July 4th. All three were also Founding Fathers. Thomas Jefferson and John Adams would pass away in 1826 and James Monroe in 1831. The passing of Thomas Jefferson and John Adams also happened on the 50th Anniversary of the founding of the USA. Newspapers at the time were not lost to the strange coincidence. The New York Evening Post, founded by Alexander Hamilton, calling it a “coincidence that has no parallel”.

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