FDR’s 1937 Columbus Day Proclamation

Happy Columbus Day! I was surprised to learn recently that Columbus Day was made a national holiday by Franklin Delano Roosevelt Columbusin 1937 (though previous presidents had urged the country to celebrate Columbus), who recognized it in the following proclamation (note the invitation to churches to observe it with “appropriate ceremonies”!):

NOW, THEREFORE, I, FRANKLIN D. ROOSEVELT, President of the United States of America, under and by virtue of the authority vested in me by the aforesaid public resolution, do by this proclamation designate October 12, 1937, as Columbus Day and do direct that on that day the flag of the United States be displayed on all Government buildings ; and, further, I do invite the people of the United States to observe the day with appropriate ceremonies in schools and churches, or other suitable places.

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