Editor's note: The following e-mail is from Charlie King Class of 1962. Thanks Charlie. Your e-mail says it all.
I heard an interesting reading at a recent Men’s Fellowship meeting at our church and looked it up on the internet when I returned home. I think it would make interesting reading for your blog viewers. Recommend you Google President George Washington’s 1789 Thanksgiving Proclamation and send a link to that Proclamation out on your blog for folks to read before or during Thanksgiving. Just be sure the link is to a copy in which the words are spelled in today’s English as some copies I saw include spelling as it was understood in the late 1700’s making it more difficult to read. This Proclamation provides an interesting (I would call it shocking) comparison of the values and views of our nation’s leadership then versus now.
By the way, we are watching television, newspaper, and mail advertising closely and plan, if possible, to shop for Christmas only at those businesses that use the term Christmas, rather than Holidays, in their advertising.
Have a happy and Healthy Thanksgiving and Christmas.
The Original Proclamation
[New York, 3 October 1789]
By the President of the United States of America.
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 interposition's 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 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 increase 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.