American Presidents
Quotes By American Presidents

President George Washington

“Do not let any one claim to be a true American if they ever attempt to remove religion from
--George Washington

“It is impossible to account for the creation of the universe without the agency of a Supreme
It is impossible to govern the universe without the aid of a Supreme Being.
It is impossible to reason without arriving at a Supreme Being. Religion is as necessary to
reason as reason is to religion. The one cannot exist without the other. A reasoning being
would lose his reason in attempting to account for the great phenomena of nature, had he
not a Supreme Being to refer to; and will has it been said, that if there had been no God,
mankind would have been obliged to imagine one.”
--George Washington

"The very atmosphere of firearms anywhere and everywhere restrains evil interference --
they deserve a place of honor with all that is good."
--George Washington

"Government is not reason. It is not eloquence. It is a force, like fire: a dangerous servant
and a terrible master".
--George Washington

"A free people ought...to be armed..."
--George Washington, speech of January 7, 1790 in the Boston Independent Chronicle,
January 14, 1790.

"Government is not reason, it is not eloquence -- it is force!"
--George Washington

“It is substantially true that virtue or morality is a necessary spring of popular government.”
--George Washington

“I never mean, unless some particular circumstances should compel it, to possess another
slave by purchase, it being among my first wishes to see some plan adopted, by which
slavery in this country may be abolished by law.”
--George Washington

“No people can be bound to acknowledge and adore the invisible hand which conducts the
affairs of men more than the people of the United States. Every step by which they have
advanced to the character of an independent nation seems to have been distinguished by
some token of providential agency.”
--George Washington

"There is nothing which can better deserve our patronage than the promotion of science
and literature.  Knowledge is in every country the surest basis of public happiness."
--George Washington

“Liberty, when it begins to take root, is a plant of rapid growth.”
--George Washington

“Ninety-nine percent of the failures come from people who have the habit of making
--George Washington

President Thomas Jefferson                                         

“On matters of style, swim with the current, on matters of principle, stand like a rock."
--Thomas Jefferson

"I have sworn upon the altar of God, eternal hostility against every form of tyranny over the
mind of man."
--Thomas Jefferson

"Nothing can stop the man with the right mental attitude from achieving his goal; nothing on
earth can help the man with the wrong mental attitude."
--Thomas Jefferson

"A wise and frugal government, which shall restrain men from injuring one another, which
shall leave them otherwise free to regulate their own pursuits of industry and
improvement, and shall not take from the mouth of labor and bread it has earned. This is
the sum of good government."
--Thomas Jefferson

"I know no safe depository of the ultimate powers of the society but the people themselves;
and if we think them not enlightened enough to exercise their control with a wholesome
discretion, the remedy is not to take it from them, but to inform their discretion."
--Thomas Jefferson

"I'm a great believer in luck, and I find the harder I work, the more I have of it.”
--Thomas Jefferson

President John Quincy Adams

“The highest glory of the American Revolution was this; it connected in one indissoluble
bond the principles of civil government with the principles of Christianity. From the day of
the Declaration...they (the American people) were bound by the laws of God, which they all,
and by the laws of The Gospel, which they nearly all, acknowledge as the rules of their
-- John Quincy Adams

"Courage and perseverance have a magical talisman, before which difficulties disappear and
obstacles vanish into air.
-- John Quincy Adams

"So great is my veneration for the Bible that the earlier my children begin to read it the
more confident will be my hope that they will prove useful citizens of their country and
respectable members of society."
-- John Quincy Adams

"I have for many years made it a practice to read through the Bible once every year."
-- John Quincy Adams

“The Declaration of Independence first organized the social compact on the foundation of
the Redeemer's mission upon earth [and] laid the cornerstone of human government upon
the first precepts of Christianity.”
-- John Quincy Adams

"I speak as a man of the world to men of the world and I say to you, search the scriptures,
the Bible is the book of all others to be read at all ages and in all conditions of human life;
not to be read once or twice or thrice through and then laid aside, but to be read in small
portions of one or two chapters every day and never to be intermitted unless by some
overruling necessity."
-- John Quincy Adams

“The pretence of an absolute, irresistible, despotic power, existing in every government
somewhere, is incompatible with the first principle of natural right. Take for example the
right to life. The moment an infant is born, it has a right to the life which it has received
from the Creator . . . no human being, no combination of human beings, has the power, I say
not the physical, but the moral power, to take a life not so forfeited [by commission of a
crime], unless in self-defense or by the laws of war.”
--John Quincy Adams

“Duty is ours; results are God's. The first and almost the only Book deserving of universal
attention is the Bible. In what light so ever we regard the Bible, whether with reference to
revelation, to history, or to morality, it is an invaluable and inexhaustible mine of knowledge
and virtue.”
--John Quincy Adams

US Representative to France Benjamin Franklin

"Whoever will introduce into public affairs the principles of Christianity will change the face
of the world."
-- Benjamin Franklin

"Whatever is begun in anger ends in shame."
--Ben Franklin  

"I haven't failed, I've found 10,000 ways that don't work."
--Ben Franklin

"Energy and persistence conquer all thing. "
--Ben Franklin

"Genius without education is like silver in the mine. "
--Ben Franklin

"They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither
liberty nor safety."
--Ben Franklin

"I think vital religion has always suffered when orthodoxy is more regarded than virtue.
The scriptures assure me that at the last day we shall not be examined on what we thought
but what we did."
--Ben Franklin

"I wish it (Christianity) were more productive of good works ... I mean real good works ...
not holy-day keeping, sermon-hearing ... or making long prayers, filled with flatteries and
compliments despised by wise men, and much less capable of pleasing the Deity."
--Ben Franklin

"If you would persuade, you must appeal to interest rather than intellect."
--Ben Franklin

"Dost thou love life? Then do not squander time; for that's the stuff life is made of."
--Ben Franklin

"They that will not be counseled cannot be helped. If you do not hear reason she will rap
you on the knuckles."
--Ben Franklin

"He that blows the coals in quarrels that he has nothing to do with, has no right to complain
if the sparks fly in his face."
--Ben Franklin

"Any fool can criticize, condemn and complain and most fools do."
--Ben Franklin

"To be thrown upon one's own resources, is to be cast into the very lap of fortune; for our
faculties then undergo a development and display an energy of which they were previously
--Ben Franklin

"Hide not your talents. They for use were made. What's a sundial in the shade."
--Ben Franklin

"Sloth makes all things difficult, but industry, all things easy. He that rises late must trot all
day, and shall scarce overtake his business at night, while laziness travels so slowly that
poverty soon overtakes him."
--Ben Franklin

"Money never made a man happy yet, nor will it. There is nothing in its nature to produce
happiness. The more a man has, the more he wants. Instead of its filling a vacuum, it makes
one. If it satisfies one want, it doubles and trebles that want another way. That was a true
proverb of the wise man, rely upon it; "Better is little with the fear of the Lord, than great
treasure, and trouble therewith."
--Ben Franklin

"Having been poor is no shame, but being ashamed of it, is."
--Ben Franklin

"Experience is a dear teacher, and only fools will learn from no other."
--Ben Franklin

President Abraham Lincoln

"You cannot bring about prosperity by discouraging thrift.
You cannot strengthen the weak by weakening the strong.
You cannot help the wage earner by pulling down the wage payer.
You cannot further the brotherhood of man by encouraging class hatred.
You cannot keep out of trouble by spending more than you earn.
You cannot build character and courage by taking away man's initiative and independence.
You cannot help men permanently by doing what they could and should do for themselves."
-- Abraham Lincoln

"Sir my concern is not whether God is on our side. My great concern is to be on God's side."
-- Abraham Lincoln

"I am not concerned that you have fallen - I am concerned that you arise. "
--Abraham Lincoln

"I will prepare, and some day my chance will come. "
--Abraham Lincoln

"Be sure you put your feet in the right place, then stand firm"
--Abraham Lincoln

"Nearly all men can stand adversity, but if you want to test a man's sharacter give him
-- Abraham Lincoln

"It is better to remain silent and be thought a fool, than to speak and remove all doubt."
-- Abraham Lincoln


President Theodore Roosevelt   

“Far better it is to dare mighty things, to win glorious triumphs, even though checkered by
failure, than to take rank with those poor spirits who neither enjoy nor suffer too much,
because they live in the gray twilight that knows not victory nor defeat. "
-- Theodore Roosevelt    

"In any moment of decision, the best thing you can do is the right thing. The worst thing you
can do is nothing. "
-- Theodore Roosevelt

"It is not the critic who counts, not the man who points out how the strong man stumbled,
or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man
who is actually in the arena; whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives
valiantly; who errs and comes short again and again; who knows the great enthusiasms, the
great devotions, and spends himself in a worthy cause; who, at the best, knows in the end
the triumph of high achievement; and who, at worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring
greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who know neither
victory nor defeat. "
-- Theodore Roosevelt

President John Kennedy                                                                                   Robert F Kennedy

"Forgive your enemies, but never forget their names. "
-- John F. Kennedy

"The time to repair the roof is when the sun is shining. "
-- John F. Kennedy

"A man does what he must - in spite of personal consequences, in spite of obstacles and
dangers and pressures - and that is the basis of all human morality. "
-- John F. Kennedy

"The future does not belong to those who are content with today, apathetic toward common
problems and their fellow man alike, timid and fearful in the face of bold projects and new
ideas. Rather, it will belong to those who can blend passion, reason and courage in a
personal commitment to the great enterprises and ideals of American society."
-- Robert F. Kennedy

"Only those who dare to fail greatly can ever achieve greatly."
-- Robert F. Kennedy

"Few will have the greatness to bend history itself; but each of us can work to change a
small portion of events, and in the total of all those acts will be written the history of this
-- Robert F. Kennedy

"Some people see things as they are and say why. I dream things that never were and say
why not?"
-- Robert F. Kennedy

Civil Rights Leader Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

"The old law about "an eye for an eye" leaves everybody blind."
- Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

"Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter."
- Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

"Even if I knew that tomorrow the world would go to pieces, I would still plant my apple
tree. "
- Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

"If a man is called to be a street sweeper, he should sweep streets even as Michelangelo
painted, or Beethoven composed music, or Shakespeare composed poetry. He should
sweep streets so well that all the hosts of heaven and earth will pause to say, "Here lived a
great street sweeper who did his job well."

- Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
"The time is always right to do what is right. "
- Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

"One who condones evils is just as guilty as the one who "
perpetrates it.
--Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.   

"We must use time creatively, in the knowledge that the time is always ripe to do right."
-- Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.  

"No man is worth his salt who is not ready at all times to risk his body, to risk his well-being,
to risk his life, in a great cause."
Martin Luther King, Jr.

“He who is devoid of the power to forgive devoid of the power to love.
- Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Eleanor Roosevelt

"No one can make you inferior without your consent."
--Eleanor Roosevelt

“You always admire what you really don't understand.”
--Eleanor Roosevelt

“The reason that fiction is more interesting than any other form of literature, to those who
really like to study people, is that in fiction the author can really tell the truth without
humiliating himself.”
--Eleanor Roosevelt

“I think, at a child's birth, if a mother could ask a fairy godmother to endow it with the most
useful gift, that gift would be curiosity.”
--Eleanor Roosevelt

“All human beings have failings, all human beings have needs and temptations and stresses.
Men and women who live together through long years get to know one another's failings;
but they also come to know what is worthy of respect and admiration in those they live with
and in themselves. If at the end one ca n say, This man used to the limit the powers that God
granted him; he was worthy of love and respect and of the sacrifices of many people, made
in order that he might achieve what he deemed to be his task, then that life has been lived
well and there are n o regrets.”
--Eleanor Roosevelt

“Happiness is not a goal, it is a by-product.”
--Eleanor Roosevelt

“Perhaps in His wisdom the Almighty is trying to show us that a leader may chart the way,
may point out the road to lasting peace, but that many leaders and many peoples must do
the building.”
--Eleanor Roosevelt

“Life must be lived and curiosity kept alive. One must never, for whatever reason, turn his
back on life.”
--Eleanor Roosevelt

“If we want a free and peaceful world, if we want to make the deserts bloom and man grow
to greater dignity as a human being-we can do it.”
--Eleanor Roosevelt

Mark Twain

“Work like you don't need the money.
Dance like no one is watching.
And love like you've never been hurt.”
--Mark Twain   

“When in doubt tell the truth.”
--Mark Twain   

"Forgiveness is the fragrance the violet sheds on the heel that has crushed it."
--Mark Twain

"Let us so live that when we come to die even the undertaker will be sorry."
--Mark Twain   

“It usually takes more than three weeks to prepare a good impromptu speech.”
--Mark Twain   

"The only way to keep your health is to eat what you don't want, drink what you don't like
and do what you'd rather not."
--Mark Twain   

“We should be careful to get out of an experience only the wisdom that is in it- and stop
there; lest we be like the cat that sits down on a hot stove-lid. She will never sit down on a
hot stove-lid again---and that is well; but also she will never sit down on a cold one anymore.
--Mark Twain   

“When I was fourteen years old, I was amazed at how unintelligent my father was. By the
time I turned twenty-one, I was astounded how much he had learned in the last seven
--Mark Twain   

“I am different from Washington; I have a higher, grander standard of principle.
Washington could not lie. I can lie, but I won't.”
--Mark Twain   

“We can secure other people's approval, if we do right and try hard; but our own is worth a
hundred of it.”
--Mark Twain   

“History, although sometimes made up of the few acts of the great, is more often shaped by
the many acts of the small.”
--Mark Twain   

“Don't go around saying the world owes you a living. The world owes you nothing. It was
here first.”
--Mark Twain   

“Clothes make the man. Naked people have little or no influence on society.”
--Mark Twain   

“The human race has one really effective weapon, and that is laughter.”
--Mark Twain   

“Always do right. This will gratify some people and astonish the rest.”
--Mark Twain   

“Loyalty to petrified opinion never yet broke a chain or freed a human soul.”
--Mark Twain   

“Courage is resistance to fear, mastery of fear---not absence of fear.”
--Mark Twain   

“Don't let school interfere with your education.”
--Mark Twain   

“Its not the size of the dog in the fight, its the size of the fight in the dog.”
--Mark Twain

Booker T. Washington

"I will permit no man to narrow and degrade my soul by making me hate him."
--Booker T. Washington--

"I have learned that success is to be measured not so much by the position that one has
reached in life as by the obstacles which he has overcome while trying to succeed. Out of
the hard and unusual struggle through which he is compelled to pass, he gets a strength, a
confidence, that one misses whose pathway is comparatively smooth by reason of birth and
--Booker T. Washington