George Bush photo

Proclamation 6218—Italian-American Heritage and Culture Month, 1990

October 26, 1990

By the President of the United States of America

A Proclamation

An estimated 12 million Americans proudly claim Italy as their ancestral homeland. Tracing their roots to the country that was once the center of the Roman Empire and, later, the birthplace of the Renaissance, these Americans have shared with their fellow citizens a rich and diverse heritage. During Italian-American Heritage and Culture Month we not only recognize the many contributions Italian-Americans have made to our country but also celebrate the enduring ties between the peoples of the United States and Italy.

Italian-Americans are heirs to a rich cultural and historic legacy, one marked by extraordinary achievements in virtually every field of endeavor. It is the acquired wisdom and unique experience of a country that has produced the literary brilliance of Dante, the inventive genius of Leonardo Da Vinci, the peerless compositions of Verdi, and the sublime artwork of Raphael and Michelangelo. The Italian peninsula -- the birthplace of these great men and many other gifted artists, poets, and philosophers -- also hosts the Holy Sea in Rome, the spiritual home of millions of people throughout the Nation and the world.

When the first Italians journeyed to this hemisphere nearly half a millennium ago, they not only brought with them a wealth of knowledge and experience but also helped to begin a long and fruitful series of exchanges between the Old World and the New. Indeed, all Americans owe a lasting debt of gratitude to the daring Italian navigators Amerigo Vespucci, Giovanni da Verrazano, and, of course, Christopher Columbus, the brave son of Genoa who landed on these shores in 1492.

Throughout our Nation's history, Italian immigrants and their descendants have been firmly devoted to the values and ideals on which the United States is founded. Since the days of the Revolutionary War, when they joined in the struggle for liberty and self-government, Americans of Italian descent have demonstrated a profound dsense of patriotism and an unfailing love of freedom. They have also inspired their fellow Americans through their great faith in God, their devotion to family life, and their appreciation for the rewards of education and hard work.

Just as a mutual commitment to democratic ideals unites Italian-Americans with their fellow citizens, shared values and aspirations continue to form a strong link between the United States and Italy. For example, the United States and Italy are committed to maintaining a strong NATO, and we welcome the ongoing elimination of artificial barriers in Europe. This month, as we celebrate the deep cultural and familial ties between our two countries, we also reaffirm the importance of our partnership as members of the Atlantic Alliance.

The Congress, by Senate Joint Resolution 349, has designated the month of October 1990 as "Italian-American Heritage and Culture Month" and has authorized and requested the President to issue a proclamation in observance of this month.

Now, Therefore, I, George Bush, President of the United States of America, do hereby proclaim the month of October 1990 as Italian-American Heritage and Culture Month. I invite all Americans to observe this month with appropriate programs, ceremonies, and activities.

In Witness Whereof, I have hereunto set my hand this twenty-sixth day of October, in the year of our Lord nineteen hundred and ninety, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and fifteenth.

Signature of George Bush


George Bush, Proclamation 6218—Italian-American Heritage and Culture Month, 1990 Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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