’75 barrels of resin’ made for fiery Fourth

On this day in 1862: Private D.L. Day, Co. B, 25th Massachusetts Volunteer Infantry, writes in his journal while on duty in New Bern:

“The Fourth was celebrated with salutes from the forts, batteries and gunboats morning, noon and night. There were gala times in Camp Oliver last night. A huge bonfire was set from a pyramid of 75 barrels of resin, and when well on fire it lighted up the camp in grand style.”


A Moravian Fourth: Bells, not whistles

On this day in 1783: Except in Salem’s Moravian community, North Carolinians ignore Gov. Andrew Martin’s call for the first statewide observance of the Fourth of July.

The Moravians, committed to a celebration “as impressive as our circumstances allow,” listen to a sermon in the morning, sing in early afternoon, march in late afternoon and ring bells and illuminate their houses at night.