George Washington, following his election as president, visits New England. Before his visit, the Selectmen of Portsmouth, N.H., question whether to introduce him as “General” or as “President.” Rev. Samuel Haven replies with an impromptu poem.
For November, 1789
IMPROMPTU, on the approach of the president of the united states.
FAME stretch’d her wings, and with her trumpet blew,
“Great Washington is near:” what praise is due?
What title shall HE have? She paus’d, and said:
“Not one; his name, alone, strikes ev’ry title dead.”
Portsmouth, New-Hampshire, Nov. 1789.
—Mathew Carey, Editor; Vol. VI, No. V.