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Again : “Surely I do not misinterpret the spirit of the CHAP. occasion when I assume that the whole body of the people covenant with me and with one another to-day, to support and defend the Constitution and the Union of the States, to yield willing obedience to all the laws, and each to every other citizen, his equal civil and political rights."
President Harrison sent to the Senate for their confirmation the names of the following gentlemen as members of his cabinet—they were all confirmed within half an hour: James G. Blaine, of Maine, to be Secretary of State; William Windom, of Minnesota, Secretary of the Treasury; Redfield Proctor, of Vermont, Secretary of War; William H. H. Miller, of Indiana, Attorney-General; John Wanamaker, of Pennsylvania, PostmasterGeneral; Benjamin F. Tracy, of New York, Secretary of the Navy; John W. Noble, of Missouri, Secretary of the Interior; and Jeremiah M. Rusk, of Wisconsin, Secretary of Agriculture.
The last of our national centennial celebrations that of the first Inauguration of George Washington—took place in 1889. The Continental Congress, during the session of 1788, after it was known that a sufficient number of the States had voted to ratify the Constitution, enacted that Presidential electors should be chosen on the first Wednesday of January, 1889, that they should cast their votes for President and Vice-President on the first Wednesday of February, and that the two houses of Congress should meet in New York City, on the first Wednesday of March,—which that year came on the fourth.
On March third, at sunset, the citizens of New York fired thirteen guns in honor of the Continental Congress, representing the Thirteen Colonies that became independent States on the 4th of July, 1776. That Congress was to expire on the morrow at noon, and the Congress
CHAP. of the new nation' was to meet at the same hour. The
cannon and the ringing of bells. At the hour of noon
Numerous delays, caused principally by the badness
having been ready for business a day or two previous. 1789: On Monday, the fifth of April, the joint Convention of
ing come the whole way from Virginia on horseback. April The Inauguration took place April thirtieth. It became
the custom thereafter, but without legal authority, to
The Centennial of the Inauguration of George
ELIZABETHPORT — WALL STREET.
Washington, as the first President of the United States, CHAP.
LXXII. was celebrated by the people throughout the Union; though, as was fitting, the main ceremonies, which lasted three days, were carried out in the City of New York, where that Inauguration took place. It was properly decided to imitate, as far as circumstances would permit, the manner in which the original one was conducted.
Washington's journey from Mount Vernon to New York had been a spontaneous and continuous ovation on the part of the people dwelling along the route, especially in the City of Philadelphia, and in the villages through which he passed. Only two of these demonstrations could be imitated with much appearance of success.
The first attempt was in bringing President Harrison and his escort, such as committees and a few invited guests, from Elizabethport, on the New Jersey shore of Staten Island Sound, twelve miles southwest of New York City. The great New York Bay, upper and lower, was swarming with ships of every description, in number estimated to be between six and seven hundred. The police steamer, the Patrol, with a sufficient force on board to preserve order, kept a wide open space through the midst of these ships, and in almost a straight line from Elizabethport to the foot of Wall street, East River, where Washington had landed. Among these ships were eleven National war vessels, with their crowd 1889 of sailors and marines; revenue cutters and merchantmen; private yachts, excursion steamers, iron steamboats, river and sound steamers; immense ferry-boats and comparatively small but saucy tugs, flitting here and there, but all under perfect control and in order. The Nation's flag-now for the first time radiant with forty-two starswas predominant among the gay emblems of corporations and private yachting clubs—the whole appearing like a collection of innumerable miniature rainbows. At the
1 Hist., pp. 572, 573.
CHAP. time appointed, the Dispatch, a United States vessel,
having on board the Presidential party, started from
When the Dispatch arrived opposite Wall street, in
The exercises of the first day were closed by the Inaugural Centennial Ball at the Metropolitan Opera House, in which a number of the descendants of those who took part in the one of 1789 participated.
The second day of the ceremonies was ushered in by 1889. religious exercises. At the call of the President's procApril lamation, services of thanksgivings for the past and
prayers for the blessings of God upon the future of the