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George Washington

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When Washington (1732–1799) renounced his commission at Commander-in-Chief of the Continental Army following the War of Independence, he earned the admiration of the world. He presided over the Constitutional Convention and is the only person ever unanimously elected to the Presidency of the United States. A man of extraordinary character, he routinely sacrified his personal interests for those of his country.

First Inaugural Address as President of the United States

In addition to displaying his great personal qualities of humility and piety, the Inaugural Address shows Washington's firm conviction that our nation has been singularly favored by the "Almighty Being."

Thanksgiving Proclamation (with Additional Examples)

The American tradition of offering thanks to God for his blessings had its origins in Washington's Proclamation. Also here are proclamations from James Madison, Abraham Lincoln, and Franklin Roosevelt.

Letters to Various Religious Organizations

The importance of freedom of worship is clear in Washington's many letters to the nation's religious communities. The letters here are addressed to faiths subject to violent persecution in other countries.

Farewell Address

In yet another extraordinary expression of friendship for his country, Washington offers us the wisdom of his many years in public service. His remarks on the importance of religion in public life are well known.