Press/Journalists

Press Release
May 20, 2010

The National Archives Celebrates the Fourth of July with Patriotic Program

Archives Float will Launch National Independence Day Parade in front of the National Archives Building

More Information

WHAT: Washington, DC…The National Archives will celebrate the 234th anniversary of the adoption of the Declaration of Independence with its traditional Fourth of July program, this year featuring ABC7/WJLA-TV News Anchor Maureen Bunyan as Mistress of Ceremonies.

The celebration will include patriotic music, a dramatic reading of the Declaration by historical reenactors, and exciting free family activities and entertainment for all ages.

Following its morning celebration, the first-ever National Archives float will launch the National Independence Day Parade in front of the National Archives Building at 11:45 am.

WHEN: Sunday, July 4, 2010, Ceremony: 10 a.m.–11 a.m.
Band Performance: 8:30–9:45 a.m.
Family activities: 11:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.
Exhibits (including the original Declaration of Independence): 10 a.m. – 9 p.m.

WHERE: Constitution Avenue steps, National Archives Building
Between 7th and 9th Streets, NW, Washington, D.C.
Space will be reserved for the electronic media

The National Archives Building is fully accessible. Please note: there will be a sign language interpreter for the ceremony.

July Fourth at the National Archives is made possible in part by the generous support of John Hancock Financial.

Program Information

This popular family event is free and open to the public. Seating on the Constitution Avenue steps is available on a first-come, first-seated basis.

Discovering the National Archives
8:30–9:30 a.m.

  • Hear the Federal City Brass Band on 9th Street
  • Meet Thomas Jefferson and sign a facsimile of the Declaration of Independence
  • Purchase items from the Archives Shop on 9th Street

Ceremony
10 a.m.–11 a.m.

  • Presentation of Colors by the Continental Color Guard
  • Performance by the U.S. Army 3rd Infantry “The Old Guard” Fife and Drum Corps
  • Keynote Remarks by Archivist of the United States David S. Ferriero
  • The singing of the National Anthem and America the Beautiful by Evan Hughes
  • Dramatic Reading of the Declaration of Independence by special guest Congressman Wm. Lacy Clay (MO) and historical reenactors Thomas Jefferson, John Adams, Benjamin Franklin, and Ned Hector

Family Activities
11 a.m.–2 p.m.
Inside the National Archives Experience

  • Meet Benjamin Franklin, Thomas Jefferson, Abigail Adams, and other historical figures
  • Air your grievances in Revolutionary manner with a quill pen
  • Sign a full-size facsimile of the Declaration of Independence
  • Listen to stories of our Patriotic Past in the Boeing Learning Center. 11:30 a.m., 12:30 p.m., and 1:30 p.m. Special note: Maureen Bunyan will read the first book at 11:30 a.m.

Extended Museum Hours: In honor of the Fourth of July celebration, the National Archives Experience will extend its visiting hours for the entire weekend. The National Archives Experience will be open from 10am to 9pm on Friday, July 2, Saturday, July 3, and Sunday, July 4. Normal summer visiting hours of 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. resume Monday, July 5.

For information on all National Archives public programs, visit www.archives.gov, or call (202) 357-5000.

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For PRESS information, contact the National Archives Public Affairs staff at (202) 357-5300.

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The U.S. National Archives and Records Administration
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