George Washington Papers

From George Washington to John Rodgers, 5 May 1784

To John Rodgers

Philadelpa 5th May 1784.

Dear Sir

The thanksgiving Sermon which you did me the favor to send me, I read with much pleasure; & pray you to accept my thanks for it, & the favorable mention you have been pleased to make of me therein.1

My Compliments await Mrs Rogers 2—with great esteem and respect I remain Dr Sir—Yr most Obedt & Affecte Servt

Go: Washington

ALS, Brick Presbyterian Church, Park Ave. at 91st St., New York.

John Rodgers (1727–1811), a leading Presbyterian preacher in America from 1748 until shortly before his death, held a pastorate in New York City for forty-five years beginning in 1765. Rodgers delivered the sermon that he sent to GW in Trinity Episcopal Church in the city, which opened its doors to him and his congregation while their “New Brick Church” was being repaired after the British occupation.

1Rodgers’s sermon, printed in New York in 1784 by Samuel Loudon was entitled: The Divine Goodness Displayed, in the American Revolution: A Sermon Preached in New-York, December 11th, 1783. Appointed by Congress, as a Day of Public Thanksgiving, throughout the United States. Rodgers used as his text verse 3 of Psalm 126: “The Lord hath done great things for us, whereof we are glad.”

2Rodgers had been married since 1764 to his second wife, Mary Antrobus Grant Rodgers, the widow of a Philadelphia merchant.

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