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U.S. Constitution

Constitution Day and Citizenship Day is September 17th

The First Declaration

The legislation calling for Constitution Day and Citizenship Day and its precursors has always called for the president to make a proclamation every year to make the holiday official. Here is a collection of some of them.


Franklin D. Roosevelt

President FDR approved the first I Am An American Day in 1940 in order to celebrate naturalized immigrants and youth reaching the voting age at the time, which was 21. The hope was to educate people about their duties as U.S. citizens. At the time, I Am An American Day was the third Sunday every May.

 President Roosevelt

Read his proclamation here

Cold War Presidents

Harry S. Truman

Under Truman, I Am An American Day was renamed to Citizenship Day and moved to September 17th, the day the Constitution was signed in 1787.

President Truman

Read his proclamation here


Dwight D Eisenhower

Eisenhower was the first president to declare a special week-long holiday after Citizenship Day called Constitution Week in order to extend the reach of Citizenship Day. From this point forward, Citizenship day was expanded to include more than just what it means to be a U.S. citizen. It became a day to celebrate the foundations of the United States: the Constitution and its people. 

President Eisenhower

Read his proclamation here


John F Kennedy

In the era of civil rights, JFK found it especially important to celebrate all people in the United States and create a sense of unity. 

President Kennedy

Read his proclamation here


Lyndon B. Johnson

LBJ hoped to bring the nation together on Constitution Day as the nation continued to mourn JFK a year after his assassination.

President Johnson

Read his proclamation here


Richard M. Nixon

Richard Nixon was the first president to make a proclamation after the passage of the 26th amendment in March 1871, allowing 18-year-olds to vote. Before this point, the holiday celebrated people turning 21. For the first time, it began celebrating people turning 18.

President Nixon

Read his proclamation here


Gerald R. Ford

President Ford celebrated the 200th anniversary of the proclamation of Independence in 1776. He called people to educate themselves about the founding of the United States on that important anniversary.

President Ford

Read his proclamations here


James E. Carter

President Carter found it important to celebrate the events that helped early America learn what its Constitution would need on the 200th anniversary of the Articles of Confederation, a precursor to the Constitution. And he also declared a say to remember them.

President Carter

Read his proclamation here


Ronald W. Reagan

Ronald Reagan had the honor of celebrating the 200th anniversary of the constitution. 

President Reagan

Read his proclamation here


George H. W. Bush

To end this string of presidents celebrating 200th anniversaries on Citizenship Day, George H. W. Bush wrote about the 200th anniversary of the Bill of Rights, and important addition to the Constitution that grants liberties to the people.

President Bush

Read his proclamation here

Modern Presidents

William J. Clinton

Bill Clinton made it clear that in the celebration of Citizenship Day, it is important for Americans not to be divided and to focus on their identities as Americans first an foremost. 

President Clinton

Read his proclamation here


George W . Bush

Signing his first proclamation of this sort mere days after the 9/11 attacks, it was more important than ever to draw the nation together on its foundation at such a tragic time. In 2004, the name was changed to Constitution Day and Citizenship Day.

President Bush

Read his proclamation here


Barack Obama

President Obama depicted Constitution Day and Citizenship Day as a beacon of hope and democracy. He encouraged people to participate in democracy to make the most out of their constitutional rights.

President Obama

Read his proclamation here


Donald J. Trump

President Trump expressed that Constitution Day and Citizenship Day serves as a reminder the Constitution exists to establish a system of checks and balances.

President Trump

Read his proclamation here


Joseph R. Biden Jr.

Biden noted the historic and ongoing strife and struggles people endure in order to counter threats against free and fair elections and the right to vote. He recognized the pressing need to "protect and expand the fundamental right to vote and make our democracy more equitable and accessible for all Americans."

President Biden

Read his proclamation here