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George Washington's Funeral - Full Page Report of the First President's Actual Interment a Week before the Nation's Official Mourning
Philadelphia, PA 1799 - Newspaper. The True American Commercial Advertiser, Philadelphia, Pa., Samuel Bradford, December 24, 1799. 4 pp., 12 3/4 x 20 in. On blue-rag paper. Printed within a black mourning border, news headed "Sacred to the Memory of Gen. George Washington" begins a nearly full-page description of Washington's funeral, including a diagram of the procession, statements of Congress and of President Adams, and a resolution to erect a monument. The nation's first president had died on December 14, 1799, and was interred at Mount Vernon by his family four days later. This newspaper reports the proceedings of a private funeral that included clergy, Masonic brothers, and local citizens. As the president was laid to rest in the family's receiving vault, vessels in the Potomac River fired a final salute to the commander in chief.News reached Philadelphia, then the seat of the federal government, on the day of his burial. Congress and President Adams immediately began planning an official mourning procession for December 26, and this paper of December 24 notes that Richard Henry Lee had been chosen to deliver the official eulogy. Excerpt"As a testimony of respect for the virtues of our late illustrious chief, we shall, each day, devote a portion of the "True American" to record the tributes of Esteem and Veneration paid by the American people to his memory. Here shall the future historian behold how Washington was beloved by every party, every class, and every age-and here shall; the collected proofs of Columbia's gratitude to her Savior and her Father, declare to an admiring world-if ingratitude is the characteristic of republics in general, it at least is not here."From John Adams's message to the Senate of December 23, 1799:"The life of our Washington cannot suffer by a comparison with those of other countries, who have been most celebrated and exalted by Fame. The attributes and decorations of Royalty, could only have served to eclipse the Majesty of those virtues, which made him, from being a modest citizen, a more respendant [resplendent] luminary. .Malice could never blast his honor, and Envy made him a singular exception to her universal rule.For his fellow citizens, if their prayers had been answered, he would have been immortal.His example is now complete, and it will teach wisdom and virtue to Magistrates, Citizens and men, not only in the present age, but in future generations, as long as our History shall be read. If a Trajan found a Pliny, a Marcus Aurelius can never want Biographers, Eulogists or Historians." This issue also includes a lengthy report on the Pennsylvania Supreme Court trial for libel brought by Dr. Benjamin Rush against William Cobbett. Cobbett had objected to one of Rush's favorite treatments-bloodletting-accusing him of harming more patients than he helped. Ironically, Washington himself is now known to be seriously harmed if not killed by the practice. While Cobbett was right in the end, Rush nonetheless won his case.ConditionDisbound, back leaf slightly trimmed costing the border and a letter or two on the final five inches of the page 3 and 4, not affecting any funeral or Benjamin Rush text.
      [Bookseller: Seth Kaller Inc.]
Last Found On: 2014-05-04           Check availability:      AbeBooks    

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