Independence Day

Monday July 3, 2017

What is it?

Independence Day celebrates the birth of the nation and honors the Army’s commitment to defend our nation since 1775.

Also referred to as the Fourth of July, it is observed annually to honor when Congress declared independence in 1776. The Continental Army and the militia in the service of Congress became known collectively as the Army of the United States, instead of the Army of the United Colonies. This year marks the 241st anniversary of America’s independence.

What has the Army done?

It was considered essential that the American Revolutionary Soldiers hear the Declaration of Independence document read, but the reading required sufficient copies be produced and distributed to the headquarters of the various Continental Army commands. Even with dispatch riders and fast-sailing ships, the nation and its armed forces had to wait to celebrate until Continental regiments in the faraway south could actually hear the momentous words. It wasn’t until after the War of 1812 that observing Independence Day became commonplace.

During World War I, American Soldiers marched through Paris, July 4th, 1918, to exuberant crowds. A ceremony was held to mark the renaming of a street to Avenue du President Wilson.

What is the Army doing?

Many military installations hold public events in honor of Independence Day, which may include a concert, gun salute and fireworks display. In 2017, roughly 183,600 Soldiers will celebrate Independence Day by supporting combatant commanders in 140 different countries.

Why is this important to the Army?

The Fourth of July is an occasion to celebrate and commemorate the freedom, history and legacy of the United States of America. It is an opportunity to reflect and thank our Soldiers, Civilians and their Families for their service, bravery, and patriotism.

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