What Happened on July 4
- 1776 US Congress proclaims the Declaration of Independence and independence from Great Britain
- 1785 James Hutton, geologist, publicly reads an abstract of his theory of uniformitarianism for the first time at the meeting of the Royal Society of Edinburgh
- 1803 The Louisiana Purchase is announced to the American people by President Thomas Jefferson
- 1838 Huskar Colliery Mining Disaster in Silkstone England: mining pit floods drown 26 children, leads to 1842 'Mines and Collieries Act' bans women and children working underground
- 1934 Hungarian physicist Leo Szilard patents the chain-reaction design for the atomic bomb
- 2017 North Korea tests first successful intercontinental ballistic missile into Sea of Japan
- More Historical Events
Jul 4 in Film & TV
- 1970 Casey Kasem's "American Top 40" debuts on LA radio
Jul 4 in Music
- 1831 "America (My Country 'Tis of Thee)", with lyric by Samuel Francis Smith, has 1st public performance at Park Street Church in Boston, Massachusetts
Jul 4 in Sport
- 1939 Lou Gehrig is first MLB player to have his number (4) retired on his "Appreciation Day" at Yankee Stadium, makes iconic "luckiest man" speech
Did You Know?
Howard Florey and Norman Heatley meet for 1st time, 11 days later they successfully recreate penicillin
On July 4, 1941
Would You Believe?
Western Samoa changes the International Date Line, so that year there were 367 days in this country, with two occurrences of Monday, July 4
On July 4, 1892
- 1925 American writer ("Gone With The Wind") Margaret Mitchell (24) marries 2nd husband John Marsh (29)
- 1931 Irish writer (Ulysses) James Joyce and Nora Barnacle finally marry in London registry office after meeting in 1904.
- 1940 Actress Gertrude Lawrence (42) weds theater owner Richard Aldrich
Articles, Photos and Quiz
Yippee! It's Independence Day for the U.S.The United States declared itself independent of Britain on this day. Ever since, celebrations marking the event have taken place every year across the country.
July 4, 1776
United States Declaration of IndependenceEngrossed copy of the United States Declaration of Independence
July 4, 1776
Weekly Quiz for July 1-7Test your knowledge of historical events and famous people in our multi-choice, weekly history quiz for July 1-7. Then challenge your friends!