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7 facts about America's 4th of July celebrations to impress your friends with. Plus bonus trivia!

Pushpita Dey | Updated on: 4 July 2016, 13:41 IST

The United States of America will celebrate its 240th year of Independence this 4 July. While some historians believe that 2 August is the ideal date to celebrate the day - as the Declaration was actually signed on that day - 4 July is when the Declaration was formally adopted.

As people across the US busy themselves celebrating their 240th year of independence with flags, fireworks and cold beer, here's looking at some interesting facts about the 4th of July.

1. On July 4, 1776, thirteen colonies claimed their independence from England, an event which eventually led to the formation of the United States.

2. The Declaration of Independence was drafted by a committee which included the likes of John Adams, Thomas Jefferson and Benjamin Franklin. The Declaration, that was drafted to justify breaking away from the Great Britain, was then adopted by the Congress on the 4th of July, 1776.

3. The actual independence day however was on 2 July 1776, when the Continental Congress approved the legal separation of the 13 colonies from Great Britain.

4. Along with beer, fireworks and flags, the 4th of July is also the day when Americans celebrate their love for hot dogs. In the year 2013, it was declared that Americans would consume 150 million hot dogs to commemorate the nation's independence.

5. John Adams and Thomas Jefferson, both of whom were instrumental in the drafting of the Declaration of Independence, breathed their last on 4 July, 1826, within five hours of each other.

6. The 4th of July fireworks that are the central attraction of the Independence Day celebrations in the USA, first began in 1777 to commemorate the first anniversary of the American colonies' Declaration of Independence.

7. Thomas Jefferson was the first American President to have held a 4th of July celebration at the White House.

Did you know that Rwanda and the Philippines also celebrate their Independence on 4 July? In Rwanda, 4 July is celebrated as Liberation Day, as it marks the end of the Rwanda Genocide. Philippines celebrates the 4th of July as the day when they secured independence from colonial control in the United States back in 1946.

First published: 4 July 2016, 13:41 IST