To all our American readers, we wish a restful and happy Thanksgiving holiday! In this proclamation of a Thanksgiving holiday long past, the Congress wished long life and rule to Louis XVI, King of France. That didn't work out too well. Other than that, though, the sentiments are as true as ever.
Whereas it hath pleased the Supreme Ruler of the universe, of his infinite goodness and mercy, so to calm the minds and do away the resentments of the powers lately engaged in a most bloody and destructive war, and to dispose their hearts towards amity and friendship, that a general pacification hath taken place, and particularly a Definitive Treaty of peace between the said United States of America and his Britannic Majesty, was signed at Paris, on the 3d day of September, in the year of our Lord 1783; the instruments of the final ratifications of which were exchanged at Passy, on the 12th day of May, in the year of our Lord 1784, whereby a finishing hand was put to the great work of peace, and the freedom, sovereignty and independence of these states, fully and completely established: And whereas in pursuit of the great work of freedom and independence, and the progress of the contest in which the United States of America have been engaged, and on the success of which the dearest and most essential rights of human nature depended, the benign interposition of Divine Providence hath, on many occasions, been most miraculously and abundantly manifested; and the citizens of the United States have the greatest reason to return their most hearty and sincere praises and thanksgiving to the God of their deliverance. [...]
And while our hearts overflow with gratitude, and our lips pronounce the praises of our great and merciful Creator, that we may also offer up our joint and fervent supplications, that it may please him of his infinite goodness and mercy, to pardon all our sins and offenses; to inspire with wisdom and a true sense of public good, all our public councils; to strengthen and cement the bonds of love and affection between all our citizens; to impress them with an earnest regard for the public good and national faith and honour, and to teach them to improve the days of peace by every good work; to pray that he will, in a more especial manner, shower down his blessings on Louis the Most Christian King our ally, to prosper his house, that his son's sons may long sit on the throne of their ancestors, a blessing to the people entrusted to his charge; to bless all mankind, and inspire the princes and nations of the earth with the love of peace, that the sound of war may be heard of no more; that he may be pleased to smile upon us, and bless our husbandry, fishery, our commerce, and especially our schools and seminaries of learning; and to raise up from among our youth, men eminent for virtue, learning and piety, to his service in church and state; to cause virtue and true religion to flourish, to give to all nations amity, peace and concord, and to fill the world with his glory.