Giving Thanks for World Peace
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Written by SeacoastNh Archives Presents
Historic Portsmouth #334  

As soon as the Treaty of Portsmouth was signed in Kittery on September 5, 1905, Russian ambassador Sergei Witte (in center with top hat) rushed to Christ Church in Portsmouth to attend a special service of Thanksgiving.  (Continued with photos below)



Both Japanese and Russian delegates had attended church here separately in August at the invitation of the Rev. Charles LeV. Brine. In September religious leaders of many faiths gathered in the crowded Portsmouth church to give thanks for world peace. Witte later wrote: “Never did I pray with more fire than at that moment. We were all welded by the heat of our enthusiasm for the great principle – Thou shalt not kill.” Christ Church, located on Madison Street in Portsmouth, was destroyed by a fire on June 19, 1963. In an odd postscript, a rocking chair that Witte reportedly sat in during his stay at the Wentworth by the Sea hotel was recently auctioned on eBay. The winning bid was $2,180.  (Photo courtesy of the Portsmouth Athenaeum)



READ" Waging Peace in 1905