Every year, thousands of people gather on July 4th for a celebrating at Rebild Bakker in Denmark to celebrate United States National Day.
Rebild National Park Society writes on their homepage:
We have been told that the 4th of July celebration in Denmark is the largest outside the USA. We are proud of that. It’s a wonderful tradition that has continued over the past 100 years. It is a testament to the unbreakable friendship that exists between our two nations who share a common appreciation for freedom and democracy. We stand together!
The Lincon Log Cabin in Rebild. The first blockhouse was built in 1934. It burned down in 1993, but the following year a new blockhouse was built to replace the old one in Washington State. It was built of timber from 70-250 years old cedar. The house was disassembled and transported to Rebild, where it was rebuilt.
Ties of Friendship. It all began more than one hundred years ago in America. A gathering of Danish-Americans came up with a vision of a special place in Denmark where they could gather once a year to meet with relatives and friends. In addition, symbolically, as a statement conﬁrming that those who had left would not forget where they had come from.
Their incentive to leave was the dream of ﬁnding freedom and a better life. They especially sought out the northern states in the USA, as did other emigrants from the Scandinavian countries, because the climate and land reminded them of what they had left behind. It had an especial attraction for farmers. The western part of the country offered free land. It was hard work but worth the effort. For most, it was a good decision.
The bronze statue “Christina” by Dennis Smith illustrates a family and his great grandmother Christina who emigrated to Utah USA.
Most of the emigrants had Jyske roots and it was instinctive for them to seek to meet here. The man with the most initiative was Max Henius from Aalborg, and the land eventually selected was the beautiful hilly heather covered ground in the outskirts of Forest of Rold — Rebild Bakker.
There were more than 10,000 participants at the ﬁrst Rebild Festival in 1912, and it was estimated that more than 1,000 came from America. Viewed through today’s eyes it was impressive. It was expensive and difficult to travel so far — across America by land and the Atlantic Ocean by boat. The King Christian the 10th participated with Queen Alexandrine and accepted the deed for 140 tender land (equal to approximately 200 acres) with the requirement: “… that every year on July 4th, America’s Independence Day, a “Rebild Festival” would be held in the Hills.” Throughout the intervening years, the Royal Family has been active in the Festival.
Some of the participants and main speakers through the years, 1945 crown prince Frederik and crown princes Ingrid, 1962 Richard Nixon, 1972 Ronald Regan and Nancy Reagan, 1972 Danny Kaye, 1987 Victor Borge, 1990 at the right Crown Prince Frederik, 2016 Queen Margrethe II, (Courtesy DR and Gerda).
In 2017 we wanted to do some special at the 4th July so we went to one of the American airmen that lost his live during WW2 and still rest at a Danish cemetery. We placed a decoration at Jack D Hodge resting place at Øster Strarup, read the story here.
Celebrating 4th July 2018 at Mount Vernon with our American family.
More pictures from the visit to Mount Vernon can be seen at Maria’s blog “Celebrating Independence Day at Mount Vernon“.
The National Monument at Mount Rushmore in South Dakota sculptured by Guston Borglum son of Danish Immigrants from a small village Børglum in northwestern Denmark. The two first Presidents and signers of the Declaration of Independence on July 4, 1776, are George Washington and Thomas Jefferson. The next are Abraham Lincoln and Ted Roosevelt.