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    Coolidge Addresses the Boy Scouts of America

    Calvin Coolidge (1872-1933), President, fine content printed Typescript Signed "Calvin Coolidge" as President, one page, 8" x 13", no place given [Washington], July 26, 1924, a press release of his speech delivered before the "Delegates of the Boy Scouts of America" prior to their departure to the 1924 Boy Scout Jamboree in Copenhagen, Denmark. Sadly, this is a stirring address delivered less than a month after Coolidge's own son, 16-year-old Calvin Coolidge, Jr. -- who had been an active Boy Scout -- tragically died of an infection. He spoke to the departing scouts (in small part): "...As Honorary president of your body, I desire to give you a word of farewell... There was no Boy Scout organization in my boyhood; but every boy who has the privilege of growing up on a farm learns instinctively the three fundamentals of scouthood. The first is a reverence for Nature... There is new life in the soil for every man... The second is a reverence for law. I remember the town meetings of my boyhood... There is something in every such meeting, in every election, that approaches very near to the sublime. I am thrilled at the thought of my audience tonight, for I never address boys without thinking that among them may be a boy who will sit in this White House... Let this nation, under your guidance, be finer nation... The third is a reverence for God. It is hard to see how a great man can be an atheist. Without the sustaining influence of faith in a divine power we could have little faith in ourselves... Doubters do not achieve; skeptics do not contribute; cynics do not create. Faith is the great movie power, and no man realizes his full possibilities unless he has the deep conviction that life is eternally important... These are not only some of the fundamentals of the teachings of the Boy Scouts, they are the fundamentals of our American institutions.... I trust that you can show to your foreign associates in the great Scout movement that you have a deep reverence for the truth, and are determined to live by it; that you wish to protect and cherish your own country and contribute to the well being, right thinking, and true living of the whole world." Calvin Coolidge's son's body lay in state in the East Room of the White House and, according to a newspaper account, when the body was carried out to the train station, "Boy Scouts assisted in keeping the lines open for the party to proceed through on their way to Union Station." His son's early death, affected Coolidge deeply. He remarked later "When he [Calvin Jr.] went, the power and glory of the Presidency went with him. Addressing a troop of Boy Scouts so soon after this tragic event must have been a moving experience." Fine condition, and ideal for display. From the Henry E. Luhrs Collection. Accompanied by LOA from PSA/DNA.


    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    February, 2006
    20th-21st Monday-Tuesday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 10
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