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Full text of the Welsh Women's Peace Memorial declaration to America of 1923, signed by 390,296 women Wales-wide and presented to the women's movements of America in New York in February 1924. The accompanying petition sheets from Wales were said to be over 7 miles long by the New York press - conveyed in a great oak casket still held in Washington's Smithsonian Institute. Over 2023-5, a Centenary Campaign by Academi Heddwch will mark the anniversary of this remarkable 'hidden history'.

Copy of the text content can be viewed from link below (scroll down to 'Peace Declaration'), and reads as follows:

“We, women of Wales, are proud to recall that there is between our little principality and the great country of the United States of America, a close historical tie in the quest for world peace.

It was an American citizen, Elihu Burritt, who inspired our fellow countryman Henry Richard to organise a series of international peace congresses in the middle years of the 19th century.

According to the plan of Elihu Burritt, the first Peace Conference was to have been held in Paris in the summer of 1848. So anxious was he about the task of international reconciliation that he proceeded alone to Paris in order to make the preliminary arrangements. He failed in Paris.

Then accompanied by Henry Richard, he went to Brussels, and a memorable conference was held here in September 1848, attended by 200 delegates from America and Great Britain. This, the work of building the ‘Temple of Peace’ was begun, through the united efforts of the American from Connecticut and the Welshman from Tregaron.

When, 66 years later, in 1914, the temple of peace was as it seemed to us shattered to its foundations, America was always in our thought; and it is no exaggeration to say that the thrill of joy was felt in many of our homes when the United States of America decided to enter the World War and make common sacrifice with us.

It is the recollection of the comradeship between an American citizen and a son of Wales in the course of peace, together with the knowledge of our joint sacrifice in the agony of war, that emboldens us to address to you this appeal.

We are not actuated by any political motives. We speak simply as the women of Wales – the daughters of a nation whose glory it has been to cherish no hatred towards any land or people, and whose desire is for the coming on earth of the reign of fellowship and goodwill.

We long for the day when the affairs of Nations shall be subject no longer to the verdict of the sword. And we feel that the dawn of the peace which shall endure would be hastened were it possible for America to take her place in the Council of the league of nations.

How that is to be done we do not know; but we do know that upon the two great peoples who did so much to decide the fortune of the war, rests largely the burden of winning that lasting peace without which all that is dear to us must perish.

We rejoice in the measure of cooperation which has already been achieved by America and Britain with other nations at Washington in the limitation of naval armaments, and at Geneva in the humanitarian measures to put an end to the detestable traffic in women and children; and also in the maturing of plans for combating the trade in opium and other noxious drugs.

And we hail with delight the movement now on foot to secure for America, with her noble traditions, direct participation in the functions of the Permanent Court of International Justice.

The future is big with hope if we as the women of this generation do our part. To us has come an opportunity as real as the responsibility is grave.

We would, therefore, appeal to you, women of the United States of America; “with malice towards none, with charity for all, with firmness in the right as God gives us to see the right,”
to aid in the effort to hand down to the generations which come after us, the proud heritage of a warless world.”

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