President’s Day originated in 1885 as a celebration of George Washington’s birthday (February 22). But was moved in 1971 as part of the ‘Uniform Monday Holiday Act.’ (Had you ever heard of that? I hadn’t.)
Several holidays were moved from fixed dates to floating Monday holidays in order to allow for more three day weekends, specifically for federal employees. While the change did not officially combine Washington’s Birthday with Lincoln’s birthday, it become common to celebrate them together, and now all U.S. Presidents are often celebrated on this day.
I was planning to share a quote from each of our Presidents today. But, to be frank, some of them didn’t say much of note. Instead, I’ve gathered some quotes that I found thought provoking, inspiring, or just plain interesting.
I hope you do too.
George Washington – President from 1789 – 1797
This reminds me that we need to be intentional in seeking out more than one perspective. College campuses and the media have capitalized on this element of human nature. It’s up to us as individuals to expose ourselves to various views as we seek to find the truth of circumstances.
George Washington also said,
It is impossible to rightly govern a nation without God and the Bible.
John Adams – President from 1797-1801
Nothing is more dreaded than the national government meddling with religion.
The foundation of national morality must be laid in private families.
Thomas Jefferson – President from 1801-1809
James Madison – President from 1809-1817
We have staked the whole future of American civilization not on the power of government, far from it. We have staked the whole of our political institutions upon the capacity of mankind for self-government, upon the capacity of each and all of us to govern ourselves according to the commandments of God. The future and success of America is not in this Constitution, but in the laws of God upon which this Constitution is founded.
Americans have the right and advantage of being armed – unlike the citizens of other countries whose governments are afraid to trust the people with arms.
John Quincy Adams – President from 1825-1829
If your actions inspire others to dream more, learn more, do more and become more, you are a leader
Martin Van Buren – President from 1837-1841
It is easier to do a job right than to explain why you didn’t.
Millard Fillmore – President from 1850-1853
May God save the country, for it is evident that the people will not.
Change is inevitable, growth is intentional.
Franklin Pierce – President from 1853-1857
The dangers of a concentration of all power in the general government of a confederacy so vast as ours are too obvious to be disregarded.
Abraham Lincoln – President from 1861-1865
…I know that the Lord is always on the side of the right. But it is my constant anxiety and prayer that I and this nation should be on the Lord’s side.
Ulysses S. Grant – President from 1869-1877
Hold fast to the Bible as the sheet anchor of your liberties, write its precepts in your hearts, and practice them in your lives. To the influence of this book are we indebted for all the progress made in true civilization, and to this we must look as our guide in the future.
Grover Cleveland – President from 1885-1889
The ship of democracy, which has weathered all storms, may sink through the mutiny of those aboard.
William McKinley – President from 1897-1901
That’s all a man can hope for during his lifetime – to set an example
– and when he is dead, to be an inspiration for history
Theodore Roosevelt – President from 1901-1909
A thorough knowledge of the Bible is worth more than a college education.
It is of little use for us to pay lip-loyalty to the mighty men of the past unless we sincerely endeavor to apply to the problems of the present precisely the qualities which in other crises enabled the men of that day to meet those crises.
Calvin Coolidge – President from 1923-1929
The foundations of our society and our government rest so much on the teachings of the Bible that it would be difficult to support them if faith in these teachings would cease to be practically universal in our country.
Harry S. Truman – President from 1945-1953
Dwight D. Eisenhower – President from 1953-1961
If you want total security, go to prison. There you’re fed, clothed, given medical care and so on. The only thing lacking… is freedom.
John Fitzgerald Kennedy – President from 1961-1963
Gerald Ford – President from 1974-1977
A government big enough to give you everything you want
is a government big enough to take from you everything you have.
James Carter Jr. – President from 1977-1981
In a nation that was proud of hard work, strong families, close-knit communities, and our faith in God, too many of us now tend to worship self-indulgence and consumption.
Ronald Wilson Reagan – President from 1981-1989
Did you find something to encourage you? Challenge you? Make you think?
Which Presidential quotes are your favorite?