Happy 4th: American facts you may or may not know.

With 50 states and a nearly 250-year history, plenty about our majestic nation will amaze and awe you. From politics and geography to notable citizens and more, you’ll be surprised by all the American facts that are unknown, forgotten, or not taught in schools.

So, if you love United States trivia, random fun facts, and learning about the history of states and how they came to be, read on to learn some fascinating facts about America—some you may know and others that may surprise you.

The current flag was designed by a 17-year-old

Our 50-star flag was designed as part of a high school project by 17-year-old Robert Heft. It was 1958, and there were only 48 states then, but Heft hoped that Hawaii and Alaska would soon be granted statehood. His teacher gave him a B– but went on to update the grade to an A after Heft submitted his design to the White House, eventually leading to a call from President Eisenhower that it had been selected as the official U.S. flag.

Americans love our pizza.

It’s no secret that Americans love pizza; however, it might surprise you that we eat enough pizza daily to cover 100 acres. Total it up, and that’s 3 billion pizzas a year.

Irene Triplett was the last recipient of an American Civil War pension.

The Civil War ended in 1865, but Irene Triplett was still collecting a pension until her passing in 2020. Her father served in the war, which entitled Triplett to a survivor’s benefit of $73.13 a month.

The Constitution wasn’t original.

You’d be wrong if you thought Ben Franklin and the Founding Fathers came up with the Constitution all by themselves. Here’s one of the historical facts about North America you may not know: They modeled it after the constitution of the Iroquois Confederacy of Native American tribes.

Oldest City in America.

Many people assume Jamestown, Virginia, is the oldest city in the United States, but the reality is Jamestown is merely the oldest English settlement. The oldest city in the United States is St. Augustine, Florida. The area was initially claimed for Spain by famed explorer Ponce De Leon in 1513; the United States took control in 1821.

Thanksgiving History.

You may think it’s a fact that Thanksgiving was always held on the fourth Thursday of November, but that’s not the case. The holiday was held on several dates until Abraham Lincoln declared in 1863 that it would henceforth be held every year on the fourth Thursday in November. This day was honored by every subsequent president until FDR moved it to the third Thursday of November in 1939 to extend the Christmas season. After many complaints, he realized his mistake and two years later moved it back to the fourth Thursday; that’s when we celebrate it today.

Independence Day on July 2?

One of the things many people don’t know about Independence Day is that Congress officially declared independence from England on July 2, 1776. We celebrated the holiday on the fourth of July when John Hancock became the first man to sign the Declaration of Independence.

Dinosaurs loved M’rica!

If you love dinosaur museums, then you’ll love this exciting fact about America: The United States has found the most dinosaur fossils and has the most variety. Although the finds have been scattered throughout the country, most were in desert areas, where vegetation isn’t likely to grow, and fossils remain more accessible since they are covered by nothing but sand and rock, as opposed to trees and soil.

Liberty Bell spelling errors?

Did you know the word Pennsylvania is spelled wrong on the Liberty Bell? Actually, “spelled wrong” is probably a bit harsh: In 1752, when the bell was made, “Pensylvania” was one of several acceptable spellings of the state name.

George Washington didn’t have wooden teeth.

Most of us have heard at one time or another that George Washington had teeth made of wood, but this isn’t true. Although he did rely on dentures due to losing his teeth early in life, forensic research has proved that his teeth were made from a combination of donkey, horse and human teeth.

Most Presidents are from…

The United States is a mighty big country, yet for some reason, one state has produced an inordinate number of presidents. One of the interesting facts about America: Eight U.S. presidents were born in Virginia. (As it’s one of the 13 original colonies, Virginia has an edge over younger states.) Next in line is Ohio, with seven presidents born there, and New York, with five.

Fireworks on July 4th have been going off for hundreds of years.

The traditional Fourth of July celebration started in 1777, one year after the Declaration of Independence was signed. Large celebrations took place in Pennsylvania and Boston and included fireworks. The tradition spread even further when fireworks became available to the public in 1783.

Denali is the tallest!

The highest mountain peak in the United States is Denali, formerly Mt. McKinley. It stands at more than 20,310 feet tall. If you want to see Denali in person, it sits within a national park with more than 6 million acres of land to explore.

Niagara Falls was the first state park in the United States.

Niagara Falls is one of the most iconic waterfalls in the world. In 1885, Niagara Falls State Park became the first state park established in the country. It was designed by Frederick Law Olmsted, who also designed Central Park in New York City.

$10,000 bill?

The largest currency denomination circulated is the $10,000 bill. One money fact is that, unlike most other bills, it didn’t picture a president, but rather treasury secretary Salmon P. Chase, who served as chief justice of the Supreme Court, starting in 1864. If you haven’t seen a $10,000 bill floating around, there’s a reason for that. The government stopped producing them in 1969.

American paper currency comes in seven denominations: $1, $2, $5, $10, $20, $50, and $100. The United States no longer issues bills in larger denominations, such as $500, $1,000, $5,000, and $10,000. But they are still legal tender and may still be in circulation.

Third-largest country In the World by Land Area and Population.

The United States of America ranks as the third-largest country in the world, both by land area and population. With a land area spanning approximately 3.8 million square miles, the USA encompasses many landscapes, including mountains, deserts, forests, and coastlines. From the towering peaks of the Rocky Mountains in the west to the sprawling plains of the Midwest and the swamps of the southeastern states, the USA boasts an impressive array of natural wonders and ecosystems. This vast land has been shaped by centuries of human activity, from indigenous civilizations like the Iroquois and Incas to European colonization, westward expansion, and industrial development.

Invention of the Internet.

The precursor to the modern internet, ARPANET, was developed by the U.S. Department of Defense. It was created to ensure a communication network that could withstand a nuclear attack during the Cold War.

The oldest public park in the U.S. is Boston Common.

Established in 1634, Boston Common is the oldest public park in the United States and has served various purposes throughout history, including as a grazing area for cattle. They also have the 2024 NBA Champions, the Boston Celtics!

The state with the most ghost towns?

With over 500 abandoned settlements, Colorado takes the crown for the most ghost towns in the USA. These eerie remnants of the gold rush era offer a glimpse into the state’s wild past.