Of Steamboats and Fireworks: The Great Mississippi River Race of 1870
by Eric Simanek
On the 4th of July of 1870, a 1,200 mile race between two steamboats on the Mississippi River was decided. The race attracted global interest. Reporters wrote about it. Gamblers wagered on it. People gathered and cheered for it.
NPR's Cokie Roberts and Rachel Martin Answer Listener Questions About Women And American Independence
Cokie Roberts answers listener questions and talks with NPR's Rachel Martin about the role women played in America's fight for independence from Great Britain.
'What to the Slave Is the Fourth of July?': The History of Frederick Douglass' Searing Independence Day Oration
Douglass’ message — about America struggling to live up to the lofty goals it set for itself at the founding — continues to be relevant.
Why Do We Celebrate July 4 With Fireworks?
The Independence Day tradition dates nearly as far back as the country's beginning and was proposed by one of the Founding Fathers.
SOURCE: The Root
Story of the Week: The Hidden Racist History of the National Anthem
by Jason Johnson
In the third, forgotten stanza, Francis Scott Key refers darkly to the members of the Colonial Marines, a battalion of runaway slaves who joined with the British Royal Army in exchange for their freedom.
This July 4th Let’s Begin to Change the Way We Think about America’s Past
by Thomas Fleming
In our colleges and universities, too many people, from professors to students, are taking a moral approach to the past.
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