Facts for Features – Holidays – The 4th of July

The Fourth of July: 2022

On July 4, 1776, the Continental Congress approved the Declaration of Independence, setting the 13 colonies on the road to freedom as a sovereign nation. As we celebrate this Independence Day, we reflect on how our Founding Fathers enshrined in our Constitution the importance of statistics as a vital tool for measuring America.

Did You Know?

2.5 million

The estimated number of people living in the newly independent nation in July 1776. Source: Historical Statistics of the United States: 1789-1945


The nation’s population on April 1, 2020.


The number of signers of the Declaration of Independence.

  • John Hancock, a merchant by trade, was the first signer. In 2020, more than 1 million business establishments nationally with paid employees were in the retail trade industry like Hancock.
  • Benjamin Franklin, who represented Pennsylvania, was the oldest signer of the Declaration of Independence at age 70. Pennsylvania had a resident population of 13,002,700 on April 1, 2020. Edward Rutledge of South Carolina was the youngest signer at age 26. South Carolina had a resident population of 5,118,425 on April 1, 2020.

Sources: 2020 County Business Patterns, US Census 2020, Vintage 2021 Population Estimates