Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Original Washington Resignation Speech "Unveiled"

The state of Maryland has acquired the original draft of a speech delivered to Congress by George Washington on 23 December 1783, in which the commanding general announced that he was delivering up his commission as head of the army and returning to Mt. Vernon. Maryland announced the purchase of the speech - for $1.5 million - yesterday, according to the Washington Post.

This copy of the speech, complete with marks of Washington's (very notable) copy-editing, was given to aide James McHenry after its delivery in Annapolis, and has been passed down through his descendants. For two years the state and the speech's owners had been in discussions about a purchase, which was made possible through funding by the state and two Baltimore businessmen.

The speech and related documents are online here [pdf].

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