For many people, April 15 – Tax Day – is the last day they’d celebrate. Not only is this the day that income tax filing and payments are due, but it is also the day of the first quarterly estimated tax payment for self-employed workers. Even getting a refund isn’t fun, because it requires extensive paperwork and hassle to file taxes. If you are looking at the bright side of April 15, it is possible to always find a reason to celebrate, no matter how much you have paid in taxes.
History of April 15
April 15 is far more important in American history than just the day taxes are due. On this date, many significant accomplishments have been made, and anyone can use a few of their tax dollars to celebrate these tax day anniversaries.
- 1892: General Electric Company Formed: On April 15, 1892, General Electric was officially formed, and today it has become one of the largest and most profitable companies in the world, bringing electricity and technology to billions of people around the globe. Without that technology and the power to run it, how would we ever e-file our taxes or get direct deposit refunds?
- 1924: First Rand McNally Road Atlas Published: It might be hard to find your way to the tax preparer’s office without these road atlas gurus, and we can be happy that the very first Rand McNally Road Atlas was published on April 15, 1924. This year, use your road atlas to plan a getaway after getting your tax refund, or just a quicker route to escape from the preparer’s office!
- 1945: Bergen-Belsen Concentration Camp Liberated: Approximately 53,000 prisoners couldn’t have been happier on tax day in 1945, when the Bergen-Belsen concentration camp in northern Germany was liberated by the British 11th Armoured Division. Consider celebrating that anniversary by donating some of your tax refund to remembrance organizations.
- 1947: Jackie Robinson Broke the Baseball Color Barrier: April is the beginning of baseball season, and on April 15, 1947, second baseman Jackie Robinson debuted with the Brooklyn Dodgers and scored the deciding run in a victory over the Boston Braves. He would go on to be named the 1947 Rookie of the Year, and you can celebrate his accomplishments with a tax day baseball game.
- 1955: First McDonald’s Franchise Opens: Even if you have a tiny refund or none at all, you can celebrate tax day with a Value Meal from McDonald’s in honor of the first franchise opening of this iconic restaurant. From that first restaurant in Des Plaines, Illinois, the company has gone on to open more than 34,000 restaurants in 119 countries. Of course, your meal today won’t cost just the 15 cents a hamburger cost in 1955!
Tax Day Birthdays
If your birthday is April 15, that happy celebration might be overshadowed by the burden of tax payments and filing, but you share an auspicious birthday with many famous and powerful people. Blow out those birthday candles knowing you’re in good company!
- 1367: King Henry IV: Who doesn’t want to share a birthday with royalty? King Henry IV of England – Earl of Derby, Earl of Northampton, Duke of Hereford, and Duke of Lancaster – was born on April 15, so who knows how far your star may rise with this fantastic birthday!
- 1452: Leonardo da Vinci: If you appreciate the arts, you’ll appreciate that April 15 is Leonardo da Vinci’s birthday. A renowned sculptor, architect, painter, and inventor, his work continues to influence artists today.
- 1933: Elizabeth Montgomery: Actress Elizabeth Victoria Montgomery was most well known for her role as Samantha Stephens on Bewitched, but she probably didn’t get her taxes done with a twitch of the nose!
- 1951: Heloise: Ponce Kiah Marchelle Heloise Cruse Evans , daughter of the original “Hints from Heloise” was born on April 15 and has continued her mother’s legacy with one of the most widely syndicated newspaper columns in the world. She may not have many tax tips, but she can help you out with great ideas for using a tax refund in clever and practical ways!
- 1990: Emma Charlotte Duerre Watson: Better known as Hermione Granger of the Harry Potter movie series, actress Emma Watson was born on tax day, and since she began her role in the wizarding world at age 9, she has probably paid more taxes already in her life than most of us ever will, but we’ll gladly spend a bit of our refunds for a trip to Diagon Alley at Universal Studios or Hogsmeade Village at Islands of Adventure.
Even if you aren’t a history buff or don’t celebrate a tax day birthday, there’s one more reason to be happy on April 15 – it’s Rubber Eraser Day, so if you make a mistake on your tax return, it will always be easy to correct!