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" I now make it my earnest prayer, that God would have you, and the State over which you preside, in his holy protection, that he would incline the hearts of the Citizens to cultivate a spirit of subordination and obedience to Government, to entertain a brotherly affection and love for one another, for their fellow Citizens of the United States at large, and particularly for their brethren who have served in the Field, and finally, that he would most graciously be pleased to dispose us all, to do Justice, to love mercy, and to demean ourselves with that Charity, humility and pacific temper of mind, which were the Characteristicks of the Divine Author of our blessed Religion, and without an humble imitation of whose example in these things, we can never hope to be a happy Nation. "

Circular to the States | Sunday, June 08, 1783

Editorial Notes

Washington’s first attempt at retirement to a private life came in 1783 when he retired as commander in chief of the Continental army.  In this Circular to the States, recounts the successes of the war for independence and encourages citizens to support and maintain a strong and useful government.  His retirement was short-lived and returned to public life in 1789 as the first President of the United States. 

From George Washington to The States, 8 June 1783