Fireworks at Union Square on July 4, 1876

Flags, crowds, and lots of pyrotechnics light up the night of America’s Centennial in Union Square.


The nation’s 100th birthday was honored with a parade that headed uptown on Broadway from Broome Street to 34th Street, at which point the procession went back downtown along Fifth Avenue to Union Square.

According to this New York Times article, 1,000 lanterns would be hung around trees in the park, gas jets would be turned on, and a 15-minute fireworks display would entertain crowds as music played.

[Image from the NYPL Digital Gallery]

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