Happy Independence Day, Ohio


Happy Independence Day!

As America celebrates her 243th birthday, families and friends are coming together to enjoy hot dogs, hamburgers, patriotic fireworks, parades, and generally speaking, all things patriotic.

In America’s early days, however, such was not the case. A long-standing argument brewed among the Founders as to which day should be “Independence Day:” July 2, when the Declaration of Independence was proposed; or July 4, when the history-making document was signed.

The idea to mark the importance of Independence Day at all got a big boost after the victory of the War of 1812 when the Federalist Party and Democratic-Republicans political parties started having their own separate celebration. These events grew in popularity as major celebrations for people, and were celebrated by hosting all-day events featuring bonfires, concerts, parades and public canon firings – taking place on either July 2nd or the 4th.

It was a little more than a decade later – exactly fifty years after the signing of the Declaration of Independence – when Thomas Jefferson and John Adams both died on July 4, 1826 – that the argument was settled once and for all.

It took Congress another 44 years to make Independence Day a federal holiday in 1870, and another 71 years for Congress to expand the grant to include people getting paid for their day off.

Nowadays, Independence Day – sometimes called the Fourth of July – is a booming industry. Americans will enjoy over 150 million hot dogs, 700 million pounds of chicken, and watch some 61,000 fireworks displays costing over $1 billion.

Ohio and the Revolutionary War:

Ohio had multiple battles take place on its soil during the Revolutionary War. The first battle took place during the Battle of Chillicothe. In this 1779 attack, 300 Kentuck militiamen charged a Shawnee Indian area in now modern-day Xenia Ohio. During the attack, the Shawnee repealed the Kentucky militia. However, Shawnee’s town was burned down and a chief was killed.

The next fight took place at the Siege of Fort Laurens.  In this siege, the British attacked a Continental army fort. However, the Americans had been tipped off by the attack and were prepared when the British came. The Americans and British suffered a shortage of supplies during the siege, so the Red Coats abandoned attacking the fort. Later on, the Continental Army discarded the base because they thought it was too far from Detroit to attack.

Three years later, the Gnadenhutten massacre happened.  The situation started when Native Americans attacked and killed several Pennsylvanians. As a result, a local militia over went to Gnadenhutten and captured over 100 Christian Delaware tribe members. The Delaware tribe had nothing to do with Pennsylvanians death, but the militiamen slaughtered all captives.

Out of 45 United States presidents, 8 have ties to the Buckeye state, which ties Virginia with most from an individual state.

Ohio’s Past Presidents:

  • William Henry Harrison: 1841
  • Ulysses S. Grant: 1869-1877
  • Rutherford B. Hayes: 1877-1881
  • James A. Garfield: 1881
  • Benjamin Harrison: 1889-1893
  • William McKinley: 1897-1901
  • William Taft: 1909-1913
  • Warren G. Harding: 1921-1923

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Zachery Schmidt is the digital editor of Battleground State News.



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