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A Sacred Union of Citizens


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Table of Contents

Chapter 1 Remembering Washington's Legacy Chapter 2 Establishing the American Character Chapter 3 Friends and Fellow Citizens Chapter 4 Our Interest Guided by Our Justice Chapter 5 Washington and the American Political Tradition Chapter 6 Truths Important at all Times Chapter 7 Appendix A: The Circular Address Chapter 8 Appendix B: The First Inaugural Chapter 9 Appendix C: The Farewell Address. Good character was central to Washington's success, and it remains essential for the success of republican government. It is particularly important, in an election year, to be reminded of the concluding thoughts of the fi

About the Author

Matthew Spalding is a political scientist who works at the Heritage Foundation in Washington, D.C. Patrick J. Garrity, a foreign policy expert, is currently a visiting fellow at the Foreign Policy Institute, Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies. He lives in Arlington, Virginia.


In this election year, it's fitting to remember our only unopposed president and the farewell address that set the standard. Congress regularly reprints it, but there has been little analytical popular literature on this seminal address. (There would not be another significant one until Eisenhower's warning about the military-industrial complex 164 years later.) Despite rumblings about Francophobic touches, the farewell address is a document that attempts to set out a rationale for the Union and its conservative foreign policy. Yet Spalding (Heritage Foundation) and Garrity (Claremont Inst.) focus as much on the effect of Washington's character on the new republic as on his speech. The first few chapters constitute a brief biography that gets us past the mythological facade that Parson Weems created. The bulk of the book outlines Washington's efforts to impress his character traits on the new government and to establish its course. With the full text of the farewell address appended, this is a good choice for both academic and public libraries.‘James Doyle, Macomb Community Coll., Warren, Mich.

Spalding's and Garrity's work is a convincing argument for the importance of Washington's ideas for our time. * American Historical Review *
Spalding and Garrity focus on the effect of Washington's character on the new republic on his speach . . . the book outlines Washington's efforts to impress his character traits on the new government and to establish its course. * Library Journal *
. . . a definitive analysis of George Washington's farewell address . . . -- Margaret Flanagan * Booklist *
This marvelous book helps to renew our understanding of George Washington's enormous contribution to the founding of our country, and of the continuing relevance of his example to the problems we face today. -- William A. Galston
This splendid volume, reminds us of how much we owe to George Washington. -- Walter Berns, John M. Olin University Professor, Georgetown University
Two hundred years after The Farewell Address was published, Matthew Spalding and Patrick J. Garrity help Washington speak once more to his 'Friends and Fellow Citizens'. -- Richard Brookhiser * National Review *
Spalding and Garrity show how George Washington was able to help shape the hearts of his countrymen-and how Washington's speeches and deeds can help shape them still. An intelligent and important work. * The Weekly Standard *
On its two-hundredth anniversary, it is appropriate for Americans to remember and reconsider this great document. A Sacred Union of Citizens is a contribution not only to the current renaissance in Washington scholarship but also to contemporary debates about citizenship and the American character. -- Daniel J. Boorstin, from the Introduction
In this impressive volume, Mr. Spalding and Mr. Garrity see a great lesson in Washington's Farewell Address . . . . This book is a major contribution to Washington scholarship. * The Washington Times *
It is worth sampling and the Farewell Address itself is definantly worth reading . . . * Richmond Times-Dispatch *

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