The First Inauguration: George Washington and the Invention of the Republic

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“Among the many vicissitudes incident to life, no occasion may have stuffed me with larger anxieties than that of which the notification was transmitted by your order, and obtained on the fourteenth day of the current month.” With these phrases to the assembled members of the Senate and Home of Representatives on April 30, 1789, George Washington inaugurated the American experiment. It was a momentous event and an immensely necessary second for the nation. By no means earlier than had a folks dared to invent a system of presidency fairly just like the one which Washington was making ready to guide, and the tensions between hope and skepticism ran excessive.

On this guide, distinguished scholar of early America Stephen Howard Browne chronicles the efforts of the primary president of america of America to unite the nation by way of ceremony, celebrations, and oratory. The story follows Washington on his journey from Mount Vernon to the positioning of the inauguration in Manhattan, recounting the festivities―speeches, parades, dances, music, meals, and flag-waving―that greeted the president-elect alongside the best way. Contemplating the persuasive energy of this procession, Browne captures intimately the pageantry, anxiousness, and spirit of the nation to reach at a extra nuanced and richly textured perspective on what it took to launch the trendy republican state.

Compellingly written and artfully argued, The First Inauguration tells the story of the early republic―and of a president who, by his phrases and comportment, offers a mannequin of management and democratic governance for at this time.

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