The Origin of Fourth of July Fireworks

When we think about the Fourth of July, images of grills, picnics, and parades come to mind. Of course, as tradition, the holiday is not complete without a spectacular fireworks display. When imagining the spectacle, one comes to wonder about their origin. The article below, featured in July 03, 1923 Perth Amboy Evening News, provides information on the history of fireworks. It is believed that fireworks originated from China where they initially were created out of hollow bamboo shoots. They would roast the bamboo shoots which would eventually explode due to their hollow air pockets. However, around 600-900 A. D. Chinese scientists created an early form of gun powder that they would stuff into bamboo shoots and throw into a fire, creating a blast. Thus, fireworks were born. Paper eventually replaced bamboo shoots as their popularity grew and were widely utilized for religious ceremonies and other occasions. According to the article, fireworks were not introduced to Europe until the seventh century. However, there is research to suggest that fireworks were not introduced to the west until the 13th century when Marco Polo brought fireworks to Europe from Asia after his travels. There we go! When done safely, fireworks are a marvelous spectacle to watch!

Article about fireworks' history and creation.

(Contributed by Kristi Chanda)

Sources:

Bradford, A. (2018, August 30). History of Fireworks. Retrieved from https://www.livescience.com/63468-fireworks-history.html

Cohen, J. (2011, July 1). Fireworks’ Vibrant History. Retrieved from https://www.history.com/news/fireworks-vibrant-history

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