On this day in 1776, the Declaration of Independence was approved by the Continental Congress, starting 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.
In July 1776, the number of people living in the colonies. (1776 population from Historical Statistics of the United States: Colonial Times to 1970.)
On this July 4th, the population milestone our nation soon will be closing in on.
Number of hot dogs (all varieties) expected to be consumed by Americans on this holiday. (That’s one frankfurter for every two people.) There’s more than a 1-in-4 chance that the hot dogs made of pork originated in Iowa, as the Hawkeye State had a total inventory of 15.2 million market hogs and pigs on March 1, 2006. This represents more than one-fourth of the nation’s total. North Carolina (8.5 million) and Minnesota (5.8 million) were the runners-up. (Data on hot dog consumption courtesy of the National Hot Dog and Sausage Council. ) Data on hogs and pigs at <http://www.nass.usda.gov>.
Total production of cattle and calves in Texas in 2005. Chances are good that the beef hot dogs, steaks and burgers on your backyard grill came from the Lone Star State, which accounted for over one-sixth of the nation’s total production. And if they did not come from Texas, they very well may have come from Nebraska (4.5 billion pounds) or Kansas (4 billion pounds).
Number of states in which the revenue from broiler chickens was $1 billion or greater between December 2004 and November 2005. There is a good chance that one of these states — Georgia, Arkansas, Alabama, North Carolina, Mississippi or Texas — is the source of your barbecued chicken.
The odds that the beans in your side dish of baked beans came from North Dakota, Michigan or Nebraska, which produced 60 percent of the nation’s dry, edible beans in 2005. Another popular July 4th side dish is corn on the cob. Florida, California and Georgia together accounted for 51 percent of the sweet corn produced nationally in 2005.
Potato salad and potato chips are popular food items at July 4th barbecues. One-half of the nation’s spuds were produced in Idaho or Washington in 2005.
Number of Americans who said they have taken part in a barbecue during the previous year. It’s probably safe to assume a lot of these events took place on Independence Day.
See Table 1230, 2006 edition: <http://www.census.gov/compendia/statab/2006/>
The value of fireworks imported from China in 2005, representing the bulk of all U.S. fireworks imported ($211 million). U.S. exports of fireworks, by comparison, came to just $14.9 million in 2005, with Australia purchasing more than any other country ($4.4 million).
The value of U.S. manufacturers’ shipments of fireworks in 2002.
In 2005, the dollar value of U.S. imports of American flags; the vast majority of this amount ($5 million) was for U.S. flags made in China.
Dollar value of U.S. flags exported in 2005. Mexico was the leading customer, purchasing $529,000 worth.
Annual dollar value of shipments of fabricated flags, banners and similar emblems by the nation’s manufacturers, according to the latest published Economic Census (2002) data.
Number of places nationwide with “liberty” in its name. The most populous one is Liberty, Mo. (28,528). Iowa, with four, has more of these places than any other state: Libertyville, New Liberty, North Liberty and West Liberty.
In 2004, the number of foreign-born residents in the United States; they accounted for 12 percent of the nation’s total population. Another 30 million Americans were “second-generation,” meaning that at least one of their parents was born abroad.
As of 2004, the percentage of the nation’s foreign-born population born in Latin America.
Number of immigrants granted legal permanent residence in the United States during fiscal year 2004. More than 1-in-4 settled in California.
Number of people who became naturalized U.S. citizens during fiscal 2004 (Oct. 1, 2003 to Sept. 30, 2004). Mexico contributed the highest number of naturalized citizens in 2004 (63,800), followed by India (38,000), the Philippines (31,400), Vietnam (27,500) and China (27,300).
Following is a list of observances typically covered by the Census Bureau Facts for Features series:
Editor’s note: The preceding data were collected from a variety of sources and may be subject to sampling variability and other sources of error. Questions or comments should be directed to the Census Bureau’s Public Information Office: telephone: (301) 763-3030; fax: (301) 457-3670; or e-mail: <PIO@census.gov>.