marines, with all loyal and law-abiding people, to convene in their usual places of worship, or wherever they may be, to confess, and to repent of their manifold sins; to implore the compassion and forgiveness of the Almighty, that, if consistent with His will, the existing rebellion may be speedily suppressed, and the supremacy of the Constitution and the laws of the United States may be established throughout all the states; to implore Him, as the Supreme Ruler of the World, not to destroy us as a people, nor suffer us to be destroyed by the hostility or connivance of other nations, or by obstinate adhesion to our own counsels, which may be in conflict with His eternal purposes, and to implore Him to enlighten the mind of the nation to know and to do His will, humbly believing that it is in accordance with His will that our place should be maintained as a united people among the family of nations; to implore Him to grant to our armed defenders and the masses of the people that courage, power of resistance, and endurance necessary to secure that result; to implore Him in his infinite goodness to soften the hearts, enlighten the minds, and quicken the consciences of those in rebellion, that they may lay down their arms and speedily return to their allegiance to the United States, that they may not be utterly destroyed, that the effusion of blood may be stayed, and that unity and fraternity may be restored, and peace established throughout all our borders."
Now, therefore, I Abraham Lincoln, President of the United States, cordially concurring with the Congress of the United States in the penitential and pious sentiments expressed in the aforesaid resolutions, and heartily approving of the devotional sign and purpose thereof, do hereby appoint the first Thursday of August next to be observed by the people of the United States as a day of national humiliation and prayer.
I do hereby further invite and request the heads of the executive departments of this Government, together with all legislators, all judges and magistrates, and all other persons exercising authority in the land, whether civil, military, or naval, and all soldiers, seamen, and marines in the national service, and all other loyal and law-abiding people of the United states, to assemble in their preferred places of worship on that day, and thereby to render to the Almighty and Merciful Ruler of the Universe such homages and such confessions, and to offer to Him such supplication as the Congress of the United States have in their aforesaid resolutions so solemnly, so earnestly, and so reverently recommended.
In testimony whereof I have hereunto set my hand and caused the seal of the United States to be affixed.
Done at the city of Washington this seventh day of July, in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and sixty-four, and of the Independence of the [L. S.] United States the eighty-ninth.
By the President:
WILLIAM H. SEWARD,
Secretary of State.
In order that the above solemn and reverent recommendations may be complied with, no fatigue or other duty not absolutely necessary will be required of the troops of this division on Thursday, the 4th instant.
History shows that those nations have been the most prosperous and powerful that were the most religious; also that those soldiers who were the most conscientious and truly pious were likewise the most reliable, valiant, and victorious.
The general commanding trusts that the solemn appeal of the Congress and president of the United States may sink deep into the heart of every soldier in this command. He directs this order, embracing the aforesaid proclamation, together with the following passages of the Holy Scriptures, be ready to every company at the roll-call to-morrow morning:
And the Lord appeared unto Solomon by night and said unto him: If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from Heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.-II Chronicles, vii: 14.
And what shall I more say? For the time would fail me to tell of Gideon, and of Barak, and of Samson, and of Jephthah; of David also, and Samuel, and of the Prophets:
Who through faith subdued kingdoms, wrought righteousness, obtained promises, stopped the mouths of lions,