By the President of the United States of America
One hundred and fifty years ago, 47 men, women and children arrived in New York harbor aboard the Norwegian sloop "Restaurationen." Although Norway's links to the New World date back to the 11th century, when Norse mariners led by Leif Erikson discovered Vinland, the arrival of the "Restaurationen" on October 9, 1825, marked the beginning of an important new era in the histories of both Norway and America.
The small group of debarking emigrants were the first of thousands-the earliest wave in a tide of settlers and pioneers who would help to tame a savage wilderness, clear the prairies and cultivate the soil.
Whole new communities would be founded by these Norwegian Americans. Their folklore, music, religious and ethnic traditions were to enrich the cultural heritage of the American people.
In 1975, as we observe the bicentennial of American independence, it is also fitting that we mark the 150th anniversary of the arrival of that first group of settlers from Norway, and express our thanks for the gifts of industry, character and love of the land that they brought with them to their new homes.
Now, Therefore, I, Gerald R. Ford, President of the United States of America, do hereby proclaim Thursday, October 9, 1975, as Norwegian-American Day in' recognition of the enormous contributions Americans of Norwegian ancestry have made, and continue to make, to our Nation and our way of life.
In Witness Whereof, I have hereunto set my hand this eighth day of September, in the year of our Lord nineteen hundred seventy-five, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two-hundredth.
GERALD R. FORD