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Proclamation 6564—National Maritime Day, 1993

May 21, 1993

By the President of the United States of America

A Proclamation

On May 22, 1819, the first transatlantic steamship voyage began when the SS Savannah left the U.S. port of Savannah, Georgia. Sixty years ago, in recognition of this historic voyage, President Franklin D. Roosevelt first called upon the American people to observe May 22 as National Maritime Day by displaying the American flag at their homes and other suitable places.

On National Maritime Day 50 years ago, the United States was engaged in a great World War. The United States merchant marine made victory possible by linking our production forces at home with our fighting forces overseas. Throughout our history, America's civilian seafarers have faithfully supported our military forces.

Thirty years ago, President John F. Kennedy cited the role of the American merchant marine in promoting world trade. "Our ships and the men who man them stand ready to serve the Nation in any circumstance and in all conditions of peaceful commerce or national emergency," he said.

On National Maritime Day 15 years ago, the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy at Kings Point, New York, was preparing to become the first Federal service academy to grant diplomas to women. The women who have since graduated from our service academies contribute significantly to our Nation's economic and military strength.

Today, America's merchant ships continue to provide jobs and economic benefits for America. The men and women who sail those ships and who serve in supporting industries are prepared to support the Nation in times of crisis. I ask all Americans to join me in saluting them on National Maritime Day, 1993.

In recognition of the importance of the U.S. merchant marine, the Congress, by a joint resolution approved May 20, 1933, has designated May 22 of each year as "National Maritime Day" and has authorized and requested the President to issue annually a proclamation calling for its appropriate observance.

Now, Therefore, I, William J. Clinton, President of the United States of America, do hereby proclaim May 22, 1993, as National Maritime Day. I urge the people of the United States to observe this day with appropriate programs, ceremonies, and activities and by displaying the flag of the United States at their homes and other suitable places. I also request that all ships sailing under the American flag dress ship on that day.

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

Signature of William J. Clinton


Note: This proclamation will be published in the Federal Register on May 25.

William J. Clinton, Proclamation 6564—National Maritime Day, 1993 Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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