This is the text of a proclamation by Josiah Bartlett (Signer of the Declaration of Independence), governor of New Hampshire, given on October 5, 1793. It declares November 21, 1793 to be a day of Public Thanksgiving. This proclamation was published in The Oracle of the Day on October 26, 1793.
Josiah Bartlett, Esquire,
Governor and Commander in Chief of the
State of New Hampshire.
For A Public
The many favors the inhabitants of this State have been made the subjects of in the court of the current year, call for a public return of sincerer gratitude and praise to that Being from whom all our mercies flow; – And the Legislature having appointed Thursday the Twenty First day of November next, to be observed as a day of public Thanksgiving throughout this State:
I have thought fit, by and with the advice of Council, to issue this Proclamation, exhorting the people of every denomination to dedicate said day to the duties of thanksgiving and praise, and to devote a reasonable part thereof in their respective places of public worship in a social manner, with grateful hearts and united voices in returning our most humble and hearty thanks to Almighty God for the unmerited favors He has been graciously pleased to confer upon us in the course of the present year now drawing to a close.
In a particular manner, that He was graciously pleased to appear for us in the course of the summer past when, by reason of a severe and early drought, the hope of the husbandman seemed likely to be cut off and we were threatened with a great and general scarcity of the necessary fruits and of the field, that in the midst of judgment He remembered mercy and by sending plentiful showers of rain, the decaying and almost dying fruits of the earth were greatly revived; and that He has been pleased so to order the latter part of the season, that we are still blessed with a competent supply of the most of the necessary fruits of the field.
That He had been pleased to continue to us the inestimable blessings of civil and religious liberty.
That notwithstanding the tumults and confusions of the contending nations, we still enjoy the blessing of peace and good government.
That we have been favored with a general measure of health, and that no waiting and pestilential disease has been suffered to prevail among us.
And together with our thanksgiving, let us entreat the Father of Mercies, to continue us the blessings we now enjoy, and bestow upon us all further needed favors.
That it would please Him still to have these United States under His Holy protection and guidance – that He would inspire those who have the management of all our public affairs with all that wisdom, prudence and integrity that is necessary to the faithful discharge of their important trusts, that all their determinations may tend to promote the real happiness and prosperity of this great and rising Republic, and that all people may be disposed to afflict in carrying such determinations into effect.
That it would please God to over-rule the tumults and confusions among the nations, in such a manner as shall subserve to His own Glory and the best good and happiness of mankind, and that in His own due time, He would calm the angry passions of the contending nations and say to them, peace, be still.
That God would be pleased to look down with an eye of compassion upon the whole human race, and dispel those clouds of ignorance, superstition and bigotry that overspread so great a part of the world, and that the knowledge of and reverential love and regard to the One God and Father, of all, and a true benevolence and good will to their fellow men, may pervade the hearts, and influence the lives of all mankind, and all Nations, Languages and Tongues be brought to join in singing, Glory to God in the highest, on Earth Peace and good will to men.
It is recommended and expected, that all persons abstain from all servile labor and such recreations as are unbecoming the solemnity of said day.
Given at the Council Chamber in Exeter, the Fifth day of October, in the year of our Lord, one thousand, seven hundred and ninety three and of the Sovereignty and Independence of the United states of America the Eighteenth.
By His Excellency’s command,
with the advice of Council,
JOSEPH PEARSON, Sec’ry.