The earliest unequivocal documentation of fireworks dates back to 12th century China, where they were first used to frighten away evil spirits with their loud sound ("bian pao") and also to pray for happiness and prosperity.
Eventually, the art and science of firework making developed into an independent profession of its own. In ancient China, pyrotechnicians (firework-masters) were well-respected for their knowledge and skill to mount dazzling displays of light and sound.
FIREWORKS IN AMERICA
America's earliest settlers brought their enthusiasm for fireworks to the United States. Fireworks and black powder were used to celebrate important events long before the American Revolutionary War. The very first celebration of Independence Day was in 1777, six years before Americans knew whether the new nation would survive the war; fireworks were a part of those festivities. In 1789, George Washington's inauguration was also accompanied by a fireworks display. This early fascination with their noise and color continues today.
In 2004, Disneyland in Anaheim, California, started using aerial fireworks launched with compressed air rather than gunpowder, the first time that such a launch system was used commercially. The display shell explodes in the air using an electronic timer. The advantages of compressed air launch are a reduction in fumes, and much greater accuracy in height and timing.
The largest manufacturer and exporter of fireworks in the world is China. China is estimated to have exported over 6 million cases or 120,000 tons of fireworks to the US in 2005.Courtesy: en.wikipedia.org