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6 > Page 6 of Address in commemoration of the first settlement of Kentucky : delivered at Boonesborough the 25th May, 1840 / by James T. Morehead.

6 The importance of that event,-the dignity of the occasion-the interest and impressiveness of the specta- cle now presented to view-all combine to inspire us with sentiments of profound gratitude to Heaven, that we have lived to see this day: and our prayers are due to the great disposer of human events, who shielded our fathers and has hitherto watched over us, that He will preserve our institutions for generations to come, and that through His divine agency we may be permitted to perpetuate this anniversary by a solemn annual dedica- tion of it to the purposes of gratitude and thanksgiving and joy. Anxious for the indulgence I have often received from my fellow citizens, and sustained by the confidence that it will not be withheld, I proceed to the performance of the duty which they have assigned to me. The seventeenth century was distinguished by the settlement of the North American colonies, and the suc- cessful establishment of their institutions. To say noth- ing of the causes by which those events were superin- duced, or of their influence upon the political affairs of mankind, it may be observed that no revolution either of manners or pursuits could be more thorough and per- ceptible, than that which was experienced by the primi- tive emigrants from the old world to the new. They were the subjects of a misgoverned but time honored state, in which the few remaining relics of feudalism gave proof of the progress of modern amelioration; and no sooner had they landed on the shore of the new world, than they found themselves the occupants of a wilderness, untrodden by the foot of civilized man, in- fested by savages, unsparing in cruelty and greatly su- perior in numbers, and bounded only by oceans that en- circled the.cOntinont. In this exposed condition, years