Every 4th of July, the United States of America celebrates its birthday. The US is a federal republic, made up of 50 states, 48 of which are located in North America between Canada and Mexico. The US also has a federal district, five self-governing territories, and other possessions. It is one of the most highly developed countries in the world, and includes nearly 40% of the total wealth in the world. The country is also a prominent political and cultural force internationally. But how old is the US?
History of America
The history of the United States of America dates back to the prehistory of the Native Americans and the colonial period. The people who lived in present day America arrived in early 1600s, mostly from England. The Spanish and French built small settlements in Florida, along the Mississippi River, the southwest, and the Gulf Coast. Most European settlers were farmers, and various industries began to develop within a few decades. Several cities were established along the coast to support local economies and to act as trade hubs. The colonies that formed the US were established in 1732, with the colonization of Georgia by the British. All colonies had local governments with elections open to free men. By 1770, the 13 British colonies had a population of about 2.1 million people.
Americans felt that their freedom had been suppressed by the European colonialists, and the American Revolutionary War marked the first successful independence campaign against the colonialists. Americans developed the spirit of “Republicanism,” maintaining that the government rested with the people’s will, as proclaimed in the local legislature. They demanded that the rights of Americans be respected and “no tax should be charged without any representation.” However, the British insisted on ruling the country through parliament, leading to war. On July 2, 1776, the Lee Resolution, which was a vote for independence, was passed and led to the Declaration of Independence two days later. July 4 has since been celebrated as US Independence Day.
Although July 2, 1776, marked the formal separation of the 13 colonies from Britain colonialists, the Declaration of Independence was officially signed on July 4, 1976. Thus, Independence Day is also known as Fourth of July, or simply as July Fourth. The US marked its first birthday on July 4, 1777, with 13 gunshots fired once in the morning and again in the evening. July 4 was first recognized as a state celebration in 1781 by the Massachusetts General Court. Thus, Independence Day became a national holiday marked by patriotic displays. On July 4, 2018, the US celebrated its 242nd birthday.