More minutiae from the Historical Society and help solve a mystery

sign near the Porch Club, June 30, 2021

Q: When does Riverton’s Glorious Fourth not happen on July 4th?

A: When the Fourth falls on a Sunday.

In case anyone is flying in to experience Riverton’s “Glorious Fourth,” this year Riverton’s festivities and parade for the Fourth of July will be held on Saturday the 3rd because the fourth falls on Sunday.

Since the first Children’s Parade in 1897, July 4th has fallen on a Sunday in the following years: 1897, 1909, 1915, 1920, 1926, 1937, 1943, 1948, 1954, 1965, 1971, 1976, 1982, 1993, 1999, 2004, 2010, 2021.

The next time this happens will be in 2027.

Palmyra Weekly News, July 3, 1897, p2

That is not to say that every observance of July Fourth that fell on a Sunday was always moved to Saturday the 3rd.

In 1897, the very first Children’s Parade was held on Monday, July 5.



1937 July 4th program pg1, courtesy of Mary Flanagan
1937 July 4th program inside

This 1937 Program mentions that the celebrations also fell on the 5th.

The ’43 festivities also occurred on a Monday.

We determined this by checking available primary sources such as newspapers and old July Fourth Programs.

Our digital newspaper archive helps somewhat, but for many years, few issues after 1949 are available.

Obviously, information is essential to the work that we do.

HSR Board Member Bill McDermott recently attended the estate sale for Mr. Ed Hartmann where he thought he saw a “stack” of New Eras from the 1950s and ’60s. When he went back later to inquire about them, they were nowhere to be found.

We are reeeealllly hoping that someone bought them and they were not discarded. Having such primary sources is an invaluable resource in reconstructing events from the Borough’s past.

If you can help locate the papers or know of any others that are not part of our digital archive, please contact us.


Published by

John McCormick

Teacher at Riverton School 1974-2019, author, amateur historian, Historical Society of Riverton Board Member 2007-2023, newsletter editor 2007-2023, website editor 2011-2023

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