US welcomes thousands of citizens on Independence Day

Yesterday, the United States of America celebrated its 243rd Birthday, marking the day by welcoming almost 7,500 new citizens in nearly 110 naturalisation ceremonies nationwide.

“It is an honour for me to welcome these new United States citizens as we celebrate the 243rd birthday of our nation,” said Acting Director of United States Citizenship and Immigration Service Ken Cuccinelli. “To host a significant event such as a naturalisation ceremony on the grounds where the Twin Towers once stood is a vivid reminder of the resiliency of our nation and of why so many people around the world make sacrifices each day in order to call the United States their new home.”

The 4th July is arguably one of the most important dates in the American calendar, with American citizens far and wide coming together to celebrate the day. Fireworks, parades, barbecues, carnivals, fairs, picnics, concerts, baseball games and family reunions, are all commonly associated with Independence Day.

Five facts about Independence Day

– The 13 States to sign the original Declaration of Independence were: Delaware, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Georgia, Connecticut, Massachusetts Bay, Maryland, South Carolina, New Hampshire, Virginia, New York, North Carolina and Rhode Island and Providence.

– Two of the men who signed the document would go on to serve as President of the United States: John Adams – the country’s second president serving between 1797 and 1801 – and Thomas Jefferson; the country’s third President, serving between 1801 and 1809.

– It wasn’t until 1938, that US Congress declared Independence Day a paid federal holiday.

– The oldest continuous Independence Day celebration is held in Bristol, Rhode Island. The Bristol Fourth of July Parade has been held since 1785 and draws around 200,000 people each year.

– The biggest Independence Day event is held on Capitol Lawn in the nation’s capital, Washington DC. A Capitol Fourth is a free annual concert which culminates in a huge firework display. More than half a million visitors attend the celebration each year.

Article published 5th July 2019