RELIGION

'Thanksgiving To Almighty God': Presidential Thanksgiving Proclamations From George Washington To Barack Obama

11/22/2011 07:49 am ET | Updated Nov 22, 2011

"Whereas it is the duty of all Nations to acknowledge the providence of almighty God, to obey his will, to be grateful for his benefits, and humbly to implore his protection and favor..."

With these words, written by George Washington in 1789, an American holiday tradition was born. Ever since, in times of peace and prosperity, war and want, American Presidents have offered gratitude to God while calling on all Americans to gather in humble praise. Though the language of thanks has changed in the past 222 years, the content of these presidential prayers remains strikingly the same.

American Presidents Give Thanks

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