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Facts about the Fourth of July, 2013

U.S. Department of Commerce - United States Census BureauWashington, D.C. – On this day in 1776, the Declaration of Independence was approved by the Continental Congress, setting the 13 colonies on the road to freedom as a sovereign nation.

As always, this most American of holidays will be marked by parades, fireworks and backyard barbecues across the country.

Here are some facts about the Fourth of July from the United States Census Bureau.

Fourth of July at the Capitol
Fourth of July at the Capitol

2.5 million

In July 1776, the estimated number of people living in the newly independent nation.
Source: Historical Statistics of the United States: Colonial Times to 1970 [1]

316.2 million

The nation’s estimated population on this July Fourth.
Source: U.S. and World Population Clock [2]

The Signers

56 – Numbers of signers to the Declaration of Independence.

Benjamin Franklin, John Adams, Thomas Jefferson, Roger Sherman and Robert R. Livingston comprised the Committee of Five that drafted the Declaration. Jefferson, regarded as the strongest and most eloquent writer, wrote most of the document.

It’s also worth noting that:

Sources: Annual Estimates of the Resident Population for Counties [3]: April 1st, 2010 to July 1st, 2012

2011 American Community Survey [4] and 2011 County Business Patterns (NAICS [5]

Fireworks

$218.2 million

The value of fireworks imported from China in 2012, representing the bulk of all U.S. fireworks imported ($227.3 million). U.S. exports of fireworks, by comparison, came to just $11.7 million in 2012, with Israel purchasing more than any other country ($2.5 million).

$231.8 million

The value of U.S. manufacturers’ shipments of fireworks and pyrotechnics (including flares, igniters, etc.) in 2007. Source: 2007 Economic Census [7], Series EC0731SP1, Products and Services Code 325998J108

Flags

$3.8 million

In 2012, the dollar value of U.S. imports of American flags. The vast majority of this amount ($3.6 million) was for U.S. flags made in China.
Source: Foreign Trade Statistics [8]  <http://www.usatradeonline.gov [9]>

$614,115

Dollar value of U.S. flags exported in 2012. Mexico was the leading customer, purchasing $188,824 worth.
Source: Foreign Trade Statistics [8]  <http://www.usatradeonline.gov [9]>

$302.7 million

Dollar value of shipments of fabricated flags, banners and similar emblems by the nation’s manufacturers in 2007, according to the latest published economic census statistics.
Source: 2007 Economic Census [7], Series EC0731SP1, Products and Services Code 3149998231

Patriotic-Sounding Place Names

Fifty-nine places contain the word “liberty” in the name. Pennsylvania, with 11, has more of these places than any other state.

Of the 59 places nationwide containing “liberty” in the name, four are counties: Liberty County, GA (65,471), Liberty County, FL (8,276), Liberty County, MT (2,392) and Liberty County, Texas (76,571).

One place has “patriot” in its name. Patriot, IN, has an estimated population of 209.

The most common patriotic-sounding word used within place names is “union” with 136. Pennsylvania, with 33, has more of these places than any other state. Other words most commonly used in place names are Washington (127), Franklin (118), Jackson (96) and Lincoln (95).

Sources: TIGER Shapefiles, the Census Bureau’s geographic database [11] (Place/MCD/County combined “used within name” count), Annual Estimates of the Resident Population for Incorporated Places: April 1st, 2010 to July 1st, 2011

The British are Coming!

$109.8 billion

Dollar value of trade last year between the United States and the United Kingdom, making the British, our adversary in 1776, our sixth-leading trading partner today.

Source: Foreign Trade Statistics [12]

Fourth of July Cookouts

65.9 million

Number of all hogs and pigs on March 1st, 2013. Chances are that the pork hot dogs and sausages consumed on the Fourth of July originated in Iowa. The Hawkeye State was home to 20.3 million hogs and pigs. North Carolina (8.9 million) and Minnesota (7.8 million) were also homes to large numbers of pigs.
Source: USDA National Agricultural Statistics Service [13]

6.3 billion pounds

Total estimated production of cattle and calves in Texas in 2012. Chances are good that the beef hot dogs, steaks and burgers on your backyard grill came from the Lone Star State, which accounted for nearly one-sixth of the nation’s total production.

And if the beef did not come from Texas, it very well may have come from Nebraska (estimated at5.1 billion pounds) or Kansas (estimated at 3.8 billion pounds).
Source: USDA National Agricultural Statistics Service [15]

6

Number of states in which the value of broiler chicken production was estimated at $1 billion or greater between December 2011 and November 2012. There is a good chance that one of these states — Georgia, Arkansas, North Carolina, Alabama, Mississippi or Texas — is the source of your barbecued chicken.
Source: USDA National Agricultural Statistics Service [16]

345 million

Acreage planted of potatoes in Idaho in 2012, the most in the nation. Washington followed with 165 million acres. The total 2012 potato crop is forecast to exceed 467 million hundredweight (cwt), the highest level since 2000 when 523 million cwt was produced. Potato salad is a popular food item at Fourth of July barbecues.
Source: USDA, National Agriculture Statistics Service [17], Economic Research Service [18]

How Do We Know?

As we celebrate this Independence Day, we reflect on how our Founding Fathers enshrined the importance of statistics in our Constitution as a vital tool for measuring our people, places and economy. Since 1790, the U.S. Census has been much more than a simple head count; it has charted the growth and composition of our nation. The questions have evolved over time to address our changing needs.

Today, the 10-year census, the economic census and the American Community Survey give Congress and community leaders the information they need to make informed decisions that shape our democracy. These statistics are how we know how our country is doing.

Visit <http://www.census.gov/how> [19] to view and to learn more about “How Do We Know?” Follow @uscensusbureau on Facebook, Twitter, Flickr, YouTube and Pinterest (#HowDoWeKnow) for updates.