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“I cannot come to each of you to take my leave, but shall be obliged to you if each will come and take me by the hand.” General Knox, being next, turned to him. Incapable of utterance, Washington grasped his hand, and embraced him. The officers came up successively, and he took an affectionate leave of each of them. Not a word was articulated on either side. A majestic silence prevailed. The tear of sensibility glistened in every eye. The tenderness of the scene exceeded all description. When the last of the officers had taken his leave, Washington left the room,
and passed through the corps of light infantry to the place of embarkation. The officers followed in a solemn, mute procession, with dejected countenances. On his entering the barge to cross the North River, he turned towards the companions of his glory, and, by waving his hat, bid them a silent adieu. Some of them answered this last signal of respect and affection with tears; and all of them gazed upon the barge, which conveyed him from their sight, till they could no longer distinguish in it the person of their beloved commander-in-chief.
The army being disbanded, Washington proceeded to Annapolis, then the seat of congress, to resign his commission. On his way thither, he, of his own accord, delivered to the comptroller of accounts in Philadelphia, an account of the expenditure of all the public money he had ever received. This was in his own hand-writing, and every entry was made in a very pariicular manner.
After accounting for all his expenditures of public money,
with all the exactness which established forms
required from the inferior officers of his army, he hastened to resign into the hands of the fathers of his country the powers with which they had invested him. This was done in a public audience. Congress receired him as the founder and guardian of the republic. While he appeared before them, they silently retraced the scenes of danger and distress, through which they had passed together. They recalled to mind the blessings of freedom and peace purchased by his arm. They gazed with wonder on their fellow-citizen, who appeared more great and worthy of esteem in resigning his power, than he had done in gloriously using it. Every heart was big with emotion. Tears of admiration and gratitude burst from every eye. The general sympathy was felt by the resigning hero, and wet his cheek with a manly tear. After a decent pause, he addressed Thomas Mifflin, the president of congress, in the following words:
“The great events on which my resignation depended having at length taken place, I have now the honor of offering my sincere congratulations to congress, and of presenting myself before them, to surrender into their hands the trust committed to me, and to claim the indulgence of retiring from the service of my country.
“Happy in the confirniation of our independence and sovereignty, and pleased with the opportunity afforded the United States of becoming a respectable nation, I resign with satisfaction the appointment I accépted with diffidence; a diffidence in my abilities to accomplish so arduous a task, which, however, was superseded by a confidence in the rectitude of our
cause, the support of the supreme power of the union, and the patronage of Heaven.
“The successful termination of the war has verified the most sanguine expectations; and my gratitude for the interposition of Providence, and for the assistance I have received from my countrymen, increases with every review of the momentous contest.
“While I repeat my obligations to the army in general, I should do injustice to my own feelings not to acknowledge in this place the peculiar services and dis'tinguished merits of the persons, who have þeen attached to my person during the war. It was impossible that the choice of confidential officers to compose my family should have been more fortunate. Permit me, sir, to recommend, in particular, those who have continued in the service to the present moment, as worthy of the favorable notice and patronage of congress.
“I consider it as an indispensable duty to close this last solemn act of my official life, by commending the interests of our dearest country to the protection of Almighty God, and those who have the superintendence of them to his holy keeping.
“Having now finished the work assigned me, I retire from the great theatre of action; and, bidding an affectionate farewell to this august body, under whose orders I have long acted, I here offer my commission, and take my leave of all the employments of public life.”
This address being ended, General Washington advanced and delivered his commission into the hands of the president of congress, who replied as follows:
66 The United States, in congress assembled, receive,
with emotions too affecting for utterance, the solemn resignation of the authorities under which you have led their troops with success through a perilous and doubtful war.
“Called upon by your country to defend its invaded rights, you accepted the sacred charge before it had formed alliances, and whilst it was without friends or a government to support you.
"You have conducted the great military contest with wisdom and fortitude, invariably regarding the rights of the civil power through all disasters and changes. You have, by the love and confidence of your fellowcitizens, enabled them to display their martial genius, and transmit their fame to posterity : you have persevered, till these United States, aided by a magnanimous king and nation, have been enabled, under a just Providence, to close the war in safety, freedom and independence ; on which happy event we sincerely join you in congratulations.
“Having defended the standard of liberty in this new world, having taught a lesson useful to those who inflict, and to those who feel oppression, you retire from the great theatre of action with the blessings of your fellow-citizeňs; but the glory of your virtues will not terminate with your military command; it will continue to animate remotest ages. We feel with you our obligations to the army in general, and will particularly charge ourselves with the interest of those confidential officers, who have attended your person to this affecting moment.
“We join you in commending the interests of our dearest country to the protection of Almighty God,
beseeching him to dispose the hearts and minds of its citizens to improve the opportunity afforded them of becoming a happy and respectable nation; and for you we address to him our earnest prayers, that a life so beloved may be fostered with all his care ; that your days may be happy as they have been illustrious, and that he will finally give you that reward, which this world cannot give."
WHAT YOUNG LADIES SHOULD READ.
A TASTE for reading is important to all intellectual beings. To our sex, it may be pronounced peculiarly necessary. It is important to all, because it is the way in which aliment is conveyed to the mind; and to our sex peculiarly necessary, because dwelling much on the contemplation of little things, they are in danger of losing the intellectual appetite. A taste for reading is therefore to them, an armour of defense. Home, the woman's province, admits of little variety. She should, therefore, diversify it by an acquaintance with the world of intellect, and shed over it the freshness derived from the exhaustless fountains of knowledge. She should render herself an entertaining and instructive fireside companion, by daily replenishing her treasury, with that gold which the hand of the robber may not waste, nor the rust of time corrode. Every young lady who, at leaving school, entertains a clear and comfortable conviction that she has finished her education, should recollect the reproof of the excellent