Lyndon B. Johnson photo

Proclamation 3847—National Maritime Day, 1968

April 22, 1968

By the President of the United States of America

A Proclamation

To sustain our Nation's strength through trade and to fulfill our international commitments throughout the world, we rely heavily on the men and ships of the American Merchant Marine.

Our merchant ships are an essential part of the transportation bridges that extend from communities in America to those in Europe and Asia—and to our servicemen and women wherever they stand in freedom's defense.

They have carried more than 20 million tons of food, weapons, and supplies to our fighting men in Vietnam.

Last year alone, they delivered about 4 million tons of wheat to our friends in need in foreign lands.

In the same year, they transported 12 million tons of our products to our trading partners abroad—and returned with 10 million tons of their goods for our people's use.

America's present position as the world's greatest trading power grows from its early tradition, when a strong merchant fleet carried the commerce of a young nation to the seaports of the old world.

The imagination, daring and farsightedness of that fleet was exemplified by the SS Savannah, which in 1819 became the first steamship to cross the Atlantic.

It is in honor of that historic voyage that the Congress in 1933 designated May 22 as National Maritime Day and requested the President to issue a proclamation annually in observance of that day, to remind Americans of the importance of the merchant fleet to our national life.

Now, Therefore, I, Lyndon B. Johnson, President of the United States of America, do hereby urge the people of the United States to honor our American Merchant Marine on Wednesday, May 22, 1968, by displaying the flag of the United States at their homes and other suitable places, and I request that all ships sailing under the American flag dress ship on that day in tribute to the American Merchant Marine.

In Witness Whereof, I have hereunto set my hand this 22nd day of April, in the year of our Lord nineteen hundred and sixty-eight, and of the Independence of the United States of America the one hundred and ninety-second.

Signature of Lyndon B. Johnson


Lyndon B. Johnson, Proclamation 3847—National Maritime Day, 1968 Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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