hundred and five years ago, 13 families from the city of Krefeld on the RhineRiver landed near Philadelphia. In the 3 centuries
since then, more than seven million other Germans have followed them to America in search of freedom
and a more prosperous future for themselves and their children. Today nearly
one in every four of us can trace our ancestry to German forebears. These
facts, and our recognition of everything that Americans of German descent have
achieved for our Nation, give all of us ample cause to celebrate on
German-American Day, 1988.
national character and way of life have been deeply influenced by Americans of
German heritage. They have made an indelible imprint on the life, culture,
progress, and prosperity of the United States in areas such as the
arts, scholarship, religion, commerce and industry, science and engineering,
government, sports, and entertainment. This is why Benjamin Franklin observed
long years ago, ``America cultivates best what Germany brought forth. . . .''
German-American bonds of international friendship are stronger than ever. As
partners in the NATO Alliance, the United States and the Federal
Republic of Germany work side by side to maintain peace and freedom. Allied
unity and resolve made possible the successful conclusion of the U.S.-U.S.S.R.
INF Treaty. As two of the world's great trading nations, the United States and the Federal
Republic of Germany share a common, deep-seated commitment to an open and
expanding world economy. The personal ties between our nations now extend
beyond immigration to include lively foreign exchange programs, booming tourism
in both directions, and the presence in the Federal Republic of Germany of
American military personnel and their dependents. Our mutual resolve in the
common defense of Western liberty is exemplified by the great city of Berlin and its brave
Kohl's visit to Washington earlier this year
visibly reaffirmed the priority our governments have long assigned to
preserving and fostering German-American relations. Common traditions, shared
convictions, and mutual interests commit us to strengthening cooperation at
every level to meet the challenges of the future. The recently completed German-AmericanFriendshipGarden, which will be
dedicated on the Mall in our Nation's Capital this autumn, symbolizes the close
and friendly relations between the Federal Republic of Germany and the United States. It also reminds us of
the need to cultivate our special ties so they might further prosper.
Congress, by Public Law 100 - 392, has designated October
as ``German-American Day'' and authorized and requested the President to issue
a proclamation in observance of that day.
Therefore, I, Ronald Reagan, President of the United States of
America, do hereby proclaim October
as German-American Day. I urge all Americans to learn more about the
contributions of German immigrants to the life and culture of the United States and to observe this day
with appropriate ceremonies and activities.
Witness Whereof, I have hereunto set my hand this twenty-third day of
September, in the year of our Lord nineteen hundred and eighty-eight, and of
the Independence of the United States of
America the two hundred and thirteenth.
[Filed with the Office
of the Federal Register, , September 26, 1988]
Note: The proclamation
was released by the Office of the Press Secretary on September 24.