By the President of the United States of America
Nearly five centuries ago an Italian navigator in the service of Spain gazed beyond the wisdom of his time and sailed west to rap at the portals of the New World. Yearly, in gratitude, we celebrate this incomparable achievement of Christopher Columbus. We honor too the courage, self-sacrifice, and perseverance that propelled him on that voyage.
These qualities can fairly be held as a standard for the people of the United States of America. When they have been foremost in our spirit, they have produced the finest moments in the history of our Republic. Let us continue to hold them fast so that we may always be open to new wisdom, but courageous and persevering in defense of the ideas we hold dear.
On October 9 we again honor the memory of Christopher Columbus and the ever-young promise of the New World.
In tribute to his achievement, the Congress of the United States, by joint resolution approved April 30, 1934 (48 Stat. 657), as modified by the Act of June 28, 1968 (82 Stat. 250), asked the President to proclaim the second Monday in October of each year as Columbus Day.
Now, THEREFORE, I, JIMMY CARTER, President of the United States of America, do hereby designate Monday, October 9, 1978, as Columbus Day. I invite the people of this Nation to observe that day in their schools, churches, and other suitable places with appropriate ceremonies to commemorate his great adventure.
I also direct that the flag of the United States be displayed on all public buildings on the appointed day in memory of Christopher Columbus.
IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this seventeenth day of August, in the year of our Lord nineteen hundred seventy-eight, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and third.
[Filed with the Office of the Federal Register, 11:54 a.m., August 17, 1978]