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George Washington’s Thanksgiving Proclamation, 1789

November 28, 2013

[New York, 3 October 1789]

By the President of the United States of America. a Proclamation.

Whereas it is the duty of all Nations to acknowledge the providence of  Almighty God, to obey his will, to be grateful for his benefits, and humbly to  implore his protection and favor–and whereas both Houses of Congress have by  their joint Committee requested me “to recommend to the People of the United  States a day of public thanksgiving and prayer to be observed by acknowledging  with grateful hearts the many signal favors of Almighty God especially by  affording them an opportunity peaceably to establish a form of government for  their safety and happiness.”

Now therefore I do recommend and assign Thursday the 26th day of November  next to be devoted by the People of these States to the service of that great  and glorious Being, who is the beneficent Author of all the good that was, that  is, or that will be–That we may then all unite in rendering unto him our sincere  and humble thanks–for his kind care and protection of the People of this Country  previous to their becoming a Nation–for the signal and manifold mercies, and the  favorable interpositions of his Providence which we experienced in thecourse and  conclusion of the late war–for the great degree of tranquillity, union, and  plenty, which we have since enjoyed–for the peaceable and rational manner, in  which we have been enabled to establish constitutions of government for our  safety and happiness, and particularly the national One now lately  instituted–for the civil and religious liberty with which we are blessed; and  the means we have of acquiring and diffusing useful knowledge; and in general  for all the great and various favors which he hath been pleased to confer upon  us.

and also that we may then unite in most humbly offering our prayers and  supplications to the great Lord and Ruler of Nations and beseech him to pardon  our national and other transgressions–to enable us all, whether in public or  private stations, to perform our several and relative duties properly and  punctually–to render our national government a blessing to all the people, by  constantly being a Government of wise, just, and constitutional laws, discreetly  and faithfully executed and obeyed–to protect and guide all Sovereigns and  Nations (especially such as have shewn kindness onto us) and to bless them with  good government, peace, and concord–To promote the knowledge and practice of  true religion and virtue, and the encrease of science among them and us–and  generally to grant unto all Mankind such a degree of temporal prosperity as he  alone knows to be best.

Given under my hand at the City of New-York the third day of October in the  year of our Lord 1789.

CREDIT TO:  George Washington / The Western Center For Journalism




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