This is the text of the November 21, 1791 William Paterson Thanksgiving Day proclamation, as he served as governor of New
Jersey; as printed in the Gazette of the United States
, November 26, 1791.


By His Excellency

William Paterson, Esquire,

Governor, Captain-General,
and Commander in Chief in and over the State of New-Jersey, and territories
thereunto belonging, Chanceler, and Ordinary in the same



proclamation-thanksgiving-day-1791-new-jersey-2Whereas it is, at all times, our duty to
approach the throne of Almighty God with gratitude and praise, but more
especially in seasons of national peace, plenty, and prosperity; I have,
therefore, thought fit, by and with the advice and consent of the Honorable the
Privy Council, to assign Thursday the eighth day of December next, to be set apart
and observed as a day of Public
and Prayer for
the great and manifold mercies conferred upon this land and people; and
particularly for the abundant produce of the earth, during the present year,
for the spirit of industry, sobriety, and economy which prevails: for the
stability and extension of our national credit and commerce, for the progress
of literature, arts and science, and for the good order, peace and plenty, and
the civil and religious liberty with which we are blessed. And also that we may
unite in our supplications, and humbly implore the Almighty Ruler of the
Universe, that he would be pleased to continue his protection and goodness to
this land and people, to smile upon all schools and seminaries of learning; to
promote agriculture, manufactures and commerce, to illuminate and guide our
public councils, to bless our national and state governments, to enable us all
to discharge our official, social and relative duties with diligence and
fidelity, to eradicate prejudice, bigotry and superstition; to advance the
interest of religion, and the knowledge and practice of virtue; and for this
purpose to pour out his holy spirit on all ministers of the gospel, and to
spread the saving light thereof to the most distant parts of the earth.


Given under my hand and seal at arms, at Trenton, the twenty-first
day of November, in the year of our Lord one thousand seven hundred and


William Patterson.


By his
Excellency’s command.

Bowes Reed,