Posts Tagged ‘Fourth of July’

Independence Day! 10 Official Symbols of the USA

It’s the Fourth of July! And thoughts of this holiday can, of course, take one in many directions: the Founding Fathers, family gatherings, the struggles over the years to maintain peace and prosperity, etc. But today, let’s take a look at 10 iconic symbols that have become synonymous with the U.S. over its 240-plus years of existence.

U.S. National Symbols Research Topic

U.S. National Symbols Research Topic via ProQuest’s eLibrary

  1. Liberty Bell  Located in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, this iconic symbol of American independence was originally commissioned in 1752.
  2. The Great Seal  The seal was created by the Founding Fathers to reflect the beliefs and values they attached to the new nation.
  3. Old Glory  Betsy Ross was reported to have sewn the first American flag in May of 1776.
  4. Bald Eagle  The American bald eagle was chosen as the National Bird in 1782, chiefly for its majestic beauty and strength.
  5. Uncle Sam  The U.S. got this nickname in 1813. The name is linked to Samuel Wilson, who supplied food to the US Army during the War of 1812.
  6. Statue of Liberty  This gift from France was dedicated in New York City in 1886, and was declared a National Monument by President Coolidge in 1924.
  7. The Pledge of Allegiance  This Oath of Loyalty was originally written in 1892 by clergyman Francis Bellamy. It was amended in 1954 to include the words “under God.”
  8. “In God We Trust”  This became the nation’s official motto in July 1956 after President Eisenhower signed it into law.
  9. The Mighty Oak  The oak tree became the national tree of the U.S. in 2004 after Americans voted for it via the National Arbor Day Foundation.
  10. Bison  In 2016, President Obama signed into law the National Bison Legacy Act, marking the bison as the country’s official mammal.
Independence Day Research Topic

Independence Day Research Topic via ProQuest’s eLibrary

For further information on these and so many other facets of Independence Day, just go to eLibrary and get started. If you don’t as yet have a subscription to ProQuest products, you can request a free trial here!


Happy Fourth of July!

A Capital Fourth Site Screencap

Today in the United States, we commemorate the independence of the nation. On this day in 1776, the Declaration of Independence was approved by the Continental Congress. To celebrate, citizens will have family barbecues, listen to patriotic music, go to a parade, or watch fireworks. See patriotic websites in Featured Websites in SIRS Issues Researcher.

Happy Independence Day from eLibrary

Even though most students are enjoying the freedom of summer right now, the school year and American history lessons will be here before you know it. So, as the U.S. prepares to celebrate its birthday, it’s a good time to note some eLibrary resources related to the American Revolution and Independence Day.

eLibrary has thousands of Research Topics (collections of articles and other documents), and many of them are related to American history. Just use the search function (many variants of the RT title will work, and many will appear in the drop-down list as you type), and you’ll likely get a page on the topic. RTs can also be found by clicking Browse Research Topics. Here is a sampling of those related to the Fourth of July, but keep in mind that there are many, many more.

Independence Day RT

Independence Day, American Revolution, Declaration of Independence, Thomas Jefferson, Boston Massacre, Fireworks

eLibrary’s book collection includes a number of titles that would be useful in learning about the nation’s struggle for independence. They can be accessed using the Publication tab or by typing all or part of the book title into the publication field on the Advanced Search page. It helps to have only the Books source type checked. To narrow a search to a particular topic, also use terms in the main search box. (Tip: Many of these books have tables of contents with links to the individual chapters.) Here are few Revolution-related book suggestions:

 The American Revolution: A History in Documents: This book uses primary sources to chronicle the lead-up to the Revolution, the war and the aftermath. It not only tells the story, but also helps provide an understanding of how primary source documents are used in looking at history.

Landmarks of the American Revolution: This books takes a tour of the places where the Revolution unfolded. Buildings, neighborhoods and battlefields are highlighted using photographs, maps and historical context.

Thomas Paine: Firebrand of the Revolution: Paine, who provided inspiration for the colonists’ decision to declare independence, is profiled in this book, which includes many images that provide context.

So, get out the hand-cranked ice cream maker, light up those sparklers and visit eLibrary for some Fourth fun.