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Fourth of July Celebrations From the 1870s to 1940 Fourth of July Celebrations From the 1870s to 1940

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Politics

Fourth of July Celebrations From the 1870s to 1940

Photos from the Library of Congress show how Americans celebrated Independence Day through the years.

July 3, 2014

It wasn't always barbecues and pool parties. Celebrating the Fourth of July has evolved through the years—except for the parades and fireworks. They've pretty much stayed the same. Here are some historical images from the Library of Congress chronicling Independence Day festivities around the country from 1876 to 1940. 

An 1876 newspaper shows the centennial celebration in Philadelphia as the seventh regiment, N.G.S. N.Y., passes under the arch on Chestnut Street.(Library of Congress)

The great Hub-and-Hub race at Deadwood, Dakota Territory, between the only two Chinese hose teams in the United States, on July 4, 1888.(Library of Congress)

A view of Escolta Street on the Fourth of July, 1899, in Manila, Philippines. The Philippines was ceded by Spain to the United States in 1889 and was recognized as independent by the U.S. in 1946.(Library of Congress)

 

A chariot race takes place during the Fourth of July celebration in Alaska sometime between 1900 and 1930.(Library of Congress)

A Fourth of July parade moves down the street in Nome, Alaska, in 1915.(Library of Congress)

A man on a horse competes in ring jousting in Vienna, Va., during the 1921 Fourth of July celebration. (Library of Congress)

 

People gather for the Fourth of July celebration in Vienna, Va. in 1921.(Library of Congress)

Three children dress in Revolutionary War attire during the Takoma Park, Md., 1922 Fourth of July celebration.(Library of Congress)

Two children participate in the 1922 Takoma Park, Md., July 4th celebration.(Library of Congress)

 

Some sharecroppers' families gather supplies for their Fourth of July celebration, in Hill House, Miss., in 1936.(Library of Congress, The Crowley Company/Dorthea Lange)

Wrestling matches were one of the forms of entertainment in the 1938 Fourth of July celebration in Ashville, Ohio.(Library of Congress, The Crowley Company)

The winners of the soapbox race during celebrations in Salisbury, Md., in 1940.(Library of Congress, The Crowley Company)

 

A man in clown makeup in the Fourth of July celebration in Salisbury, Md., in 1940.(Library of Congress, The Crowley Company)

Spectators watch a beauty contest held during the Fourth of July celebration in Salisbury, Md., in 1940.(Library of Congress, The Crowley Company)

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