By The President of the United States
October 10, 1866
Pointing to the peace, security, and progress that the country has made under his leadership, President Johnson makes a Proclamation creating Thanksgiving as a national holiday.
By the President of the United States--A Proclamation. Almighty God, our Heavenly Father, has been pleased to vouch sage to us as a people another year of that national life which is an indispensable condition of peace, security, and progress. That year has, moreover, been crowned with many peculiar blessings. The civil war that so recently closed among us has not been anywhere reopened. Foreign intervention has ceased to excite alarm or apprehension; intrusive pestilence has been benignly mitigated; domestic tranquillity has improved; sentiments of conciliation have largely prevailed, and affections of loyalty and patriotism have been widely revived; our fields have yielded quite abundantly; our mining industry has been richly rewarded; and we have been allowed to extend our railroad system far into the interior recesses of the country, while our commerce has resumed its customary activity in foreign seas. These great national blessings demand a national acknowledgement. Now therefore I, Andrew Johnson, President of the United States, do hereby recommend that Thursday the 29th day of November next be set apart, and be observed everywhere in the several States and Territories of the United States by the people thereof as a day of thanksgiving and praise to Almighty God, with due remembrance that "in his temple doth every man speak of His honor." I recommend, also, that on the same solemn occasion they do humbly and honestly implore Him to grant to our National Councils, and to our whole people, that Divine wisdom which alone can lead any nation into the ways of all good. In offering these national thanksgivings, praises, and supplications, we have the divine assurance that "the Lord remaineth a King forever. Them that are meek shall He guide in judgment, and such as are gentle shall He learn His way. The lord shall give strength to his people; a the Lord shall give to His people the blessing of peace." In witness whereof I have hereunto set my hand, and caused the seal of the United States to he affixed. Done at the city of Washington this eighth day of October, in the year of our Lord 1866, and of the independence of the United States the ninety-first. Andrew Johnson By the President: William H. Seward, Secretary of State.
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“By The President of the United States,” Reconstructing Virginia, accessed January 20, 2018, https://reconstructingvirginia.richmond.edu/items/show/359.