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5 Fun Facts About July 1 In Pennsylvania History

---Learn Every Day: PA Today In History Facts Texted Each Day - Text: history pa To: 618-270-4005---

1. Pennsylvania became the second state to ratify the United States Constitution on July 1, 1788. This decision was significant as it helped to bring about the eventual adoption of the new federal government in the United States.

2. On July 1, 1863, the Battle of Gettysburg began, which would prove to be one of the most significant battles of the American Civil War. The battle lasted for three days and resulted in a Union victory, with nearly 50,000 casualties in total.

3. In 1893, the first public zoo in America, the Philadelphia Zoo, opened its doors to the public on July 1. Today, the zoo is home to over 1,300 animals and is one of the most popular tourist attractions in the state.

4. On July 1, 1913, the first automobile speed limit in America was enacted in Pennsylvania. The limit was set at 10 miles per hour in cities and 15 miles per hour in rural areas. This law was intended to improve public safety and reduce accidents on the state's highways.

5. In 1963, a tragic fire at the Willow Grove Park Mall in Pennsylvania claimed the lives of six people on July 1. The fire was caused by faulty wiring in the park's movie theater and resulted in widespread changes to fire safety regulations across the country.
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