On this day in 1790, George Washington delivered the first State of the Union Address to Congress at Federal Hall in New York City
January 8, 2024
An event every year that begins at 12:00 am on day 8 of January, repeating indefinitely
On this day in 1790, George Washington delivered the first State of the Union Address to Congress at Federal Hall in New York City. Among other things, Washington presented the young nation’s current affairs in foreign policy, the economy, immigration, and national defense. Informed by a requirement in Article II, Section 3 of the Constitution, the address set a precedent for future presidents to address the current welfare of the country and outline goals for the coming year.
Did you know? Washington’s 1790 State of the Union address was not only the first but the shortest in U.S. history. Beginning with Thomas Jefferson, presidents delivered the State of the Union in written form. In 1913, Woodrow Wilson revived the practice of presenting the address in person to Congress.
George Washington, Gilbert Stuart, 1796-1803