restricted access Appendix B: Important Writings of Washington
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GW_451-500.indd 475 5/2/12 8:02 AM APPENDIX B Important Writings of Washington I. Speech ro the Officers of the Army, March 15, 1783 II. Address to Congress on Resigning Commission, December 23, 1783 III. Letter ro Continental Congress, September 17, 1787 IV. First Inaugural Address, April 30, 1789 V. Farewell Address, September 19, 1796 * * * Editors'Note: The texts are taken from The Writings ofWashington, ed. John C. Fitzpatrick, 39 volumes (Washington: United States Government Printing Office , 1931-44). Spelling, punctuation, italics, etc., are unchanged, except in a few instances where an omission, error, or obvious impediment ro the reader is corrected in brackets. A few notes have been supplied. 475 GW_451-500.indd 476 5/2/12 8:02 AM ~ Appendix B *' I. Speech to the Officers ofthe Army Head Quarters, Newburgh, March 15, 1783. Gentlemen: By an anonymous summons, an attempt has been made to convene you together; how inconsistent with the rules ofpropriety! how unmilitary! and how subversive ofall order and discipline, let the good sense ofthe Army decide. In the moment of this Summons, another anonymous production was sent into circulation, addressed more to the feelings and passions, than to the reason and judgment of the Army. The author of the piece, is entitled to much credit for the goodness of his Pen and I could wish he had as much credit for the rectitude of his Heart, for, as Men see thro' different Optics, and are induced by the reflecting faculties of the Mind, to use different means, to attain the same end, the Author of the Address, should have had more charity, than to mark for Suspicion , the Man who should recommend moderation and longer forbearance, or, in other words, who should not think as he thinks, and act as he advises. But he had another plan in view, in which candor and liberality ofSentiment, regard to justice, and love of Country, have no part; and he was right, to insinuate the darkest suspicion, to effect the blackest designs. That the Address is drawn with great Art, and is designed to answer the most insidious purposes. That it is calculated to impress the Mind, with an idea of premeditated injustice in the Sovereign power of the United States, and rouse all those resentments which must unavoidably flow from such a belief. That the secret mover of this Scheme (whoever he may be) intended to take advantage of the passions, while they were warmed by the recollection of past distresses, without giving time for cool, deliberative thinking, and that composure of Mind which is so necessary to give dignity and stability to measures is rendered too obvious, by the mode of conducting the business, to need other proof than a reference to the proceeding. Thus much, Gentlemen, I have thought it incumbent on me to observe to you, to shew upon what principles I opposed the irregular and hasty meeting which was proposed to have been held on Tuesday last: and not because I wanted a disposition to give you every oppertunity consistent with your own honor, and the dignity of the Army, to make known your grievances. If my conduct heretofore , has not evinced to you, that I have been a faithful friend to the Army, my declaration of it at this time wd. be equally unavailing and improper. But as I was among the first who embarked in the cause ofour common Country. As I GW_451-500.indd 477 5/2/12 8:02 AM ~ Important Writings ofWashington :>&have never left your side one moment, but when called from you on public duty. As I have been the constant companion and witness ofyour Distresses, and not among the last to feel, and acknowledge your Merits. As I have ever considered my own Military reputation as inseperably connected with that of the Army. As my Heart has ever expanded with joy, when I have heard its praises, and my indignation has arisen, when the mouth of detraction has been opened against it, it can scarcely be supposed, at this late stage of the War, that I am indifferent to its interests. But, how are they to be promoted? The way is plain, says the anonymous Addresser. If War continues, remove into the unsettled Country; there establish yourselves, and leave an ungrateful Country to defend itself. But who are they to defend? Our Wives, our Children, our Farms, and other property which we leave behind us. or, in this state of hostile seperation...


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Subject Headings

  • Washington, George, -- 1732-1799.
  • Presidents -- United States -- Biography.
  • Generals -- United States -- Biography.
  • United States -- Politics and government -- 1775-1783.
  • United States -- Politics and government -- 1783-1809.
  • United States -- History -- Revolution, 1775-1783 -- Campaigns.
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