Manuscript/Mixed Material George Washington, October 3, 1789, Thanksgiving

About this Item


THANKSGIVING PROCLAMATION77

A copy of this proclamation was sent to the executives of the States by the President in a brief form letter (October 3). This form is recorded in the “Letter Book” in the Washington Papers.

City of New York, October 3, 1789.

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 Committee78 requested me “to recommend to the People of the United States a day of public thanks-giving 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.”

The Senate concurred in the House resolve to this effect, September 26.

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 the course 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 shown kindness unto 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.79

From the original in the writing of William Jackson. It was signed by Washington, who had written in the day “third” in the date.

This was the first national Thanksgiving Day proclamation under the Constitution.

About this Item

Title
George Washington Papers, Series 8, Miscellaneous Papers ca. 1775-99, Subseries 8A, Correspondence and Miscellaneous Notes: Correspondence and Miscellaneous Notes, 1773-1799
Contributor Names
Washington, George, 1732-1799 (Author)
Created / Published
1773/1799
Subject Headings
-  United States
-  Manuscripts
Genre
Manuscripts
Call Number/Physical Location
MSS 44693: Reel 124
series: Series 8, Miscellaneous Papers, 1738-1799
series: Subseries 8A: Correspondence and Miscellaneous Notes
Source Collection
George Washington papers
Repository
Manuscript Division
Language
English
Online Format
image
online text
pdf

Rights & Access

The George Washington Papers at the Library of Congress

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The Diaries of George Washington

The following statement is made by the Rector and Visitors of the University of Virginia, the copyright owners of The Diaries of George Washington.

Donald Jackson and Dorothy Twohig, eds. The Diaries of George Washington. 6 vols. Charlottesville: University Press of Virginia, 1976-79; a series of The Papers of George Washington. Copyright 1976-79 by the Rector and Visitors of University of Virginia. Used by permission of the publisher. The publisher is not responsible for the correctness and completeness of the images and texts as they appear in this online collection.

University Press of Virginia External

Cite This Item

Citations are generated automatically from bibliographic data as a convenience, and may not be complete or accurate.

Chicago citation style:

Washington, George. George Washington Papers, Series 8, Miscellaneous Papers -99, Subseries 8A, Correspondence and Miscellaneous Notes: Correspondence and Miscellaneous Notes, 1773 to 1799. /1799, 1773. Manuscript/Mixed Material. https://www.loc.gov/item/mgw8a.124/.

APA citation style:

Washington, G. (1773) George Washington Papers, Series 8, Miscellaneous Papers -99, Subseries 8A, Correspondence and Miscellaneous Notes: Correspondence and Miscellaneous Notes, 1773 to 1799. /1799. [Manuscript/Mixed Material] Retrieved from the Library of Congress, https://www.loc.gov/item/mgw8a.124/.

MLA citation style:

Washington, George. George Washington Papers, Series 8, Miscellaneous Papers -99, Subseries 8A, Correspondence and Miscellaneous Notes: Correspondence and Miscellaneous Notes, 1773 to 1799. /1799, 1773. Manuscript/Mixed Material. Retrieved from the Library of Congress, <www.loc.gov/item/mgw8a.124/>.

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