To quote Katy Perry, “Baby, you’re a firework!” And although we’re obviously not ACTUALLY fireworks, a lot of us will be SEEING them next week at Fourth of July celebrations large and small.
But how did they come to be part of our nation’s independence celebrations? And where did they come from in the first place?
At some point, Chinese chemists put together charcoal, sulfur and other ingredients, and unwittingly yielded an early form of gunpowder. They then began stuffing the substance into bamboo shoots that were then thrown into the fire to produce a loud blast and visual explosion.
Ta-da – the first fireworks were born.
And here’s a little U.S. history from Wikipedia:
“America’s earliest settlers brought their enthusiasm for fireworks to the United States. Fireworks and black ash were used to celebrate important events long before the American Revolutionary War. The very first celebration of Independence Day was in 1777, six years before Americans knew whether the new nation would survive the war; they were a part of all festivities. In 1789, George Washington’s inauguration was also accompanied by a display. This early fascination with their noise and color continues today.”
Fun fact: The Walt Disney Company is the largest consumer of fireworks in the United States.