Many Americans Are Clueless About July 4th


july-4It may be hard to believe, but apparently a lot of Americans don’t even know what the 4th of July is all about. A new Marist poll found a lot of people are fuzzy about the reason why we celebrate Independence Day.

According to the poll, only 58 percent of Americans know the United States declared its independence in 1776. Twenty-six percent were unsure and 16 percent said another date.

The poll also found that one in four Americans don’t know from which country we declared our independence. It found that while 76 percent correctly said Great Britain, 19 percent were unsure and five percent said a different country.

Paul Giana, a teacher from New York City, calls the poll results shocking. “It’s not a focus anymore,” he said. “It’s kind of our responsibility to have a stronger sense of history and I think we do a poor job of passing that on to the next generation.”

In fact, the poll found that age is a factor when it comes to knowing the correct answers about American history. It said only 31 percent of adults younger than 30 knew that 1776 is when we declared independence.

“No one is scoring an A plus on these questions regardless of age, but when it comes to people under 30, clearly those numbers are pretty disturbing,” said Lee Miringhoff, director of the Marist poll.

That percentage does increase with older Americans with 59 percent between the ages of 30 and 44 and 75 percent between 45 and 59 knowing the answer.

The poll surveyed more than a thousand people. To read the full July 4th Marist poll, click here.

{WCBS 880 AM Radio NY/ Newscenter}


  1. Who are the Marists? Why should we believe their poll? What was the methodology? Who funded it? Maybe they’re right, maybe they’re wrong, but how can we know without more information?

  2. I think that most of these polls that are used to tell us how stupid our American brothers and sisters are are probably done by stupid people with a stupid interest and a wicked outlook on life. And I do not believe that our people are as uneducated as these “polls” suggest.

  3. #1- you are incorrect. The colonies declared that they were 13 independent states on July 4, 1776. You may be confusing this with the creation of the United States, which did not really start until 11 years later.

  4. #5:

    #1 is correct. The colonies declared their independence on July 2nd, 1776. Then, Thomas Jefferson was asked to draft the Declaration of Independence. After the Continental Congress amended it slightly, it – the document, not independence – was approved on July 4th.

  5. I find this poll hard to believe.I never came across anyone no matter how uneducated that didn’t know what July 4th is about.