The tour of the remarkably well-preserved 224-year-old book, "Acts of Congress", opened at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library in Simi Valley, Cal.
The volume includes other legislation passed by the first Congress, and contains his notes penciled in the margins.
(Imagine what he would have jotted about Congressional gridlock forcing the sequester!)
It is emblazoned with Washington’s bookplate, featuring his family coat of arms with the motto "exitus acta probat" (the result is the test of the actions.)
"Acts of Congress" highlights include:
- Washington’s first Inaugural Address. The National Archives displayed part of this first inaugural address for President Obama's second inauguration. For my story, click here.
- Washington’s annotated draft of the first Constitution.
- "George Washington and the Paparazzi", a short film about his letter declining to sit for a portrait.
- Washington’s Thanksgiving Proclamation.
Washington received the book in 1789, his first year as President. When he retired from public office in 1797, he took it to his Mount Vernon home in Alexandria, Virginia just outside the nation's capital.
After the book tour, Washington’s "Acts of Congress" will reside permanently at Mount Vernon's Fred W. Smith National Library for the Study of George Washington, scheduled to open later this year.
"The result is the test of the actions" -- the United States of America is partly the result, the test and testament of George Washington's actions.