2015 Press Releases

Celebrate July 4th at the National Archives in DC, Nationwide, and Online!
Press Release · Thursday, June 11, 2015

Washington, DC

Events in DC and at Presidential Libraries, and special online social media opportunities

The National Archives celebrates the 239th anniversary of the adoption of the Declaration of Independence with special events in Washington, DC, at Presidential Libraries nationwide, and online.

Celebrate July 4th at the National Archives in Washington, DC


The National Archives in Washington, DC, will celebrate the 239th anniversary of the adoption of the Declaration of Independence with its traditional Fourth of July program. C-SPAN host Steve Scully will return to serve as emcee for a fourth year, and Archivist of the United States David S. Ferriero will make remarks. See additional information. The free celebration will include patriotic music, a dramatic reading of the Declaration by historical reenactors, and exciting family activities and entertainment for all ages.

July 4th at the National Archives is made possible in part by the National Archives Foundation with the generous support of Signature Sponsor John Hancock. Major support provided by The Coca-Cola Company and Dykema..


Saturday, July 4, 2015, Ceremony: 10 a.m. – 11 a.m.

Family activities: 11 a.m. – 4 p.m.
Exhibits (including the original Declaration of Independence): 10 a.m. – 5:30 p.m.


Constitution Avenue steps, National Archives Building
Between 7th and 9th Streets, NW, Washington, DC

Space will be reserved for the electronic media

The National Archives Building is fully accessible. There will be a sign-language interpreter for the ceremony.

Win a trip to DC for July 4th: It’s not too late to enter the giveaway contest to win a free trip for a family of four to DC sponsored by the National Archives Foundation. Entries will be accepted through June 15.

Program Information: July 4th at the National Archives in Washington, DC

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. Watch live on the National Archives YouTube channel.

Sign the Declaration of Independence
8 a.m. – 9:30 a.m.

Sign a facsimile of the Declaration of Independence on 7th Street and Constitution Avenue.

Live Performances on the Constitution Avenue Stage
9 a.m. – 9:45 a.m.

Declaration of Independence Reading Ceremony
10 a.m. – 11 a.m.

  • Ceremony emcee, C-SPAN host Steve Scully
  • Presentation of colors by the Continental Color Guard*
  • National Anthem led by Adalia Jimenez
  • Performance by the Fife and Drum Corps*
  • Remarks by Archivist of the United States David S. Ferriero
  • Dramatic reading of the Declaration of Independence by special guests including Thomas Jefferson, John Adams, Benjamin Franklin, and Ned Hector (portrayed by historical reenactors)
  • Performance of “America the Beautiful” by the Washington, DC, Area American Heritage Girls

* Continental Color Guard and Fife and Drum Corps provided by U.S. 3rd Infantry, the Old Guard.

Stay and enjoy front-row seats for the National Independence Day Parade at 11:45 a.m.

Live Performances on the Constitution Avenue Stage
11 a.m. – 11:30 a.m.

Family Activities
11 a.m. – 4 p.m.

Inside the National Archives Museum, Boeing Learning Center
Participate in a variety of hands-on family activities including:

  • Collecting Autographs
  • Making cockades
  • Listening to stories of our patriotic past at 11 a.m., noon, 1:30 p.m., and 3 p.m.
  • Making colonial-style wigs
  • Signing the Declaring independence
  • Between noon and 4 p.m., meet Revolutionary figures: Abigail and John Adams, Benjamin Franklin, Ned Hector, John Hancock, Thomas Jefferson, and George Washington
  • Taste American Heritage Chocolate® in the Visitor Orientation Plaza

Celebrate July 4th at the National Archives Presidential Libraries

Herbert Hoover Presidential Library and Museum, West Branch, IA
An Eastern Iowa Brass Band Concert at the West Branch High School will feature museum docent Richard Paulus as Samuel Adams reading the Declaration of Independence. This event is at 2 p.m.

Lyndon B. Johnson Presidential Library and Museum, Austin, TX
The Lyndon B. Johnson Presidential Library and Museum will offer free admission all day.

Gerald R. Ford Presidential Museum, Grand Rapids, MI
The Gerald R. Ford Presidential Museum will participate in a city-wide celebration. The museum opens its grounds and allows visitors to watch the city fireworks. Admission fees still apply when visiting the museum.

Ronald Reagan Presidential Library and Museum, Simi Valley, CA
The Ronald Reagan Presidential Library is hosting a day full of family-fun activities. This year’s celebration will include the Los Angeles Police Concert band, performing our favorite patriotic tunes. There will be family entertainment, games, crafts, and more. Mingle with our Presidential and First Lady look-alikes.

All outdoor activities are free; admission rates apply to view the Ronald Reagan Presidential Museum, Air Force One Pavilion, and the library’s special exhibit, “Football! The Exhibition.”

George Bush Presidential Library and Museum, College Station, TX
The George Bush Presidential Library and Museum will once again host the annual “I Love America! 4th of July Celebration” in partnership with the College Station Noon Lions Club and the Brazos Valley Symphony Orchestra.The museum will open at 9:30 a.m. with free admission all day and will extend its hours to 8:15 p.m. The outside activities will begin with a flag-raising ceremony at 5 p.m. The Kids Zone will be open from 6 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. A musical program begins at 6 p.m. After a dusk hot air balloon glow, enjoy fireworks accompanied by the Brazos Valley Symphony Orchestra. For questions or more information, visit Bush41.org or call 979-691-4014.

Fourth of July Celebration—Social Media

Join the conversation using the hashtag #ArchivesJuly4

Take a #ColonialSelfie

Snap a picture with a Founding Father at our July 4 celebration. If you aren't in Washington, DC, be creative; your #ColonialSelfie can be with anything that was in fashion in 1776!

Tell the World #ISignedTheDeclaration

Sign your name to the Declaration of Independence! Take a picture, tag it with #ISignedTheDeclaration, and share it with us on social media. If you attend our celebration in DC, look for the booth at the corner of Constitution Avenue and Seventh Street, and add your John Hancock to the list. The booth will be moved inside to the Boeing Learning Lab at 11 a.m.

Share Your Patriotic Spirit

We've sized these images to make social sharing easy!

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For press information contact the National Archives Public Affairs staff at 202-357-5300.

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