AN EXPLOSIVE DAY: Facts about our nation and how it celebrates independence

By Emily Le Coz/NEMS Daily Journal


POPULATION

2.5 million
In July 1776, the estimated number of people living in the newly independent nation.

313.9 million
The nation’s estimated population on this July Fourth.

2,978,512
Mississippi’s population as of July 2011.

FLAGS

$3.6 million
In 2011, the dollar value of U.S. imports of American flags. The vast majority of this amount ($3.3 million) was for U.S. flags made in China.

$663,071
Dollar value of U.S. flags exported in 2011. Mexico was the leading customer, purchasing $80,349 worth.

$302.7 million
Dollar value of shipments of fabricated flags, banners and similar emblems by the nation’s manufacturers in 2007.

COOKOUTS

Almost 1 in 3
The chance that the hot dogs and pork sausages consumed on the Fourth of July originated in Iowa. The Hawkeye State was home to 19.7 million hogs and pigs on March 1, 2012. This estimate represents almost one-third of the nation’s estimated total. North Carolina (8.6 million) and Minnesota (7.6 million) were also homes to large numbers of pigs.

7.2 billion lbs.
Total production of cattle and calves in Texas in 2011. Chances are good that the beef hot dogs, steaks and burgers on your backyard grill came from the Lone Star State, which accounted for about one-sixth of the nation’s total production. And if the beef did not come from Texas, it very well may have come from Nebraska (4.6 billion pounds) or Kansas (4.0 billion pounds).
6
Number of states in which the value of broiler chicken production was estimated at $1 billion or greater between December 2010 and November 2011. There is a good chance that one of these states – Georgia, Arkansas, North Carolina, Alabama, Mississippi or Texas – is the source of your barbecued chicken.

FIREWORKS

$232.3 million
The value of fireworks imported from China in 2011, representing the bulk of all U.S. fireworks imported ($223.4 million).

$15.8 million
U.S. exports of fireworks in 2011, with Australia purchasing more than any other country ($4.5 million).

$231.8 million
The value of U.S. manufacturers’ shipments of fireworks and pyrotechnics (including flares, igniters, etc.) in 2007.

According to the U.S. Census Bureau
Compiled by Emily Le Coz, Daily Journal