Americans trace their heritage back to German ancestry than to any other
nationality. More than seven million Germans have come to our shores through
the years, and today some 60 million Americans -- one in four -- are of German
descent. Few people have blended so completely into the multicultural tapestry
of American society and yet have made such singular economic, political,
social, scientific, and cultural contributions to the growth and success of
these United States as have Americans of
United States has embraced a vast
array of German traditions, institutions, and influences. Many of these have
become so accepted as parts of our way of life that their ethnic origin has
been obscured. For instance, Christmas trees and Broadway musicals are familiar
features of American society. Our kindergartens, graduate schools, the social
security system, and labor unions are all based on models derived from Germany.
teachers, musicians, and enthusiastic amateurs have left an indelible imprint
on classical music, hymns, choral singing, and marching bands in our country.
In architecture and design, German contributions include the modern suspension
bridge, Bauhaus, and Jugendstil. German-American
scientists have helped make the United States the world's pioneer in
research and technology. The American work ethic, a major factor in the rapid
rise of the United States to preeminence in agriculture and industry, owes much
to German-Americans' commitment to excellence.
more than 3 centuries, Germans have helped build, invigorate, and strengthen
this country. But the United States has given as well as
received. Just a generation ago, America conceived of and
swiftly implemented the Marshall Plan, which helped the new German democracy
rise from the rubble of war to become a beacon of democracy in Central Europe. The Berlin Airlift
demonstrated the American commitment to the defense of freedom when, still
recovering from war, Berlin was threatened by
strangulation from the Soviets.
the Federal Republic of Germany is a bulwark of democracy in the heart of a
divided Europe. Germans and Americans
are rightfully proud of our common values as well as our shared heritage. For
more than 3 decades the German-American partnership has been a linchpin in the Western Alliance. Thanks to it, a whole
generation of Americans and Europeans has grown up free to enjoy the fruits of
histories are thus intertwined. We now contribute to each
other's trade, enjoy each other's cultures, and learn from each other's
experiences. The German-AmericanFriendshipGarden, which will be
dedicated in the District of Columbia in the near future, is
symbolic of the close and amicable relations between West Germany and the United States.
Congress, by Public Law 100 - 104, has designated October 6, 1987, the 304th
anniversary of the arrival of the first German immigrants in Philadelphia, as
``German-American Day'' and has authorized and requested the President to issue
a proclamation in observance of that day.
Therefore, I, Ronald Reagan, President of the United States of America, do hereby proclaim Tuesday,
October 6, 1987, as German-American Day. I urge all Americans to learn more
about the contributions of German immigrants to the life and culture of the United States and to observe this day
with appropriate ceremonies and activities.
Witness Whereof, I have hereunto set my hand this 2nd day of Oct., in the year
of our Lord nineteen hundred and eighty-seven, and of the Independence of the United States of
America the two hundred and
[Filed with the Office
of the Federal Register, , October 5, 1987]