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5 Fun Facts About July 4 In West Virginia History

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

1) West Virginia became an independent state on June 20, 1863, during the height of the Civil War. However, it was not until July 4 of that year that the state's admission to the Union was officially recognized.

2) During the late 1800s and early 1900s, July 4 was celebrated with grand parades in many West Virginia towns, complete with marching bands, floats, and patriotic speeches.

3) In 1890, the town of Bramwell, WV held a unique July 4 celebration. The town's wealthy coal barons donated $4,000 (equivalent to over $100,000 today) for a "prize fight" between two champion boxers, which drew thousands of spectators.

4) On July 4, 1950, riots broke out in the town of Weirton, WV after rumors spread that a white woman had been sexually assaulted by a black man. The violence, which lasted several days and resulted in injuries to over 50 people, was one of the largest race riots in the state's history.

5) In recent years, July 4 celebrations in West Virginia have included events such as a hot dog eating contest in Berkeley Springs, an Independence Day parade in Ripley, and a fireworks display in Charleston.
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