“Wait, what? Are you kidding me?”
May I present to you Norton I, Emperor of the United States, Protector of Mexico.
But first, how did His Majesty rise to power?
By 1859, Norton had become completely disgruntled with what he considered the inadequacies of the legal and political structures of the United States. On September 17, 1859, he took matters into his own hands and distributed letters to the various newspapers in the city, proclaiming himself “Emperor of these United States”
At the peremptory request and desire of a large majority of the citizens of these United States, I, Joshua Norton, formerly of Algoa Bay, Cape of Good Hope, and now for the last 9 years and 10 months past of S. F., Cal., declare and proclaim myself Emperor of these U. S.; and in virtue of the authority thereby in me vested, do hereby order and direct the representatives of the different States of the Union to assemble in Musical Hall, of this city, on the 1st day of Feb. next, then and there to make such alterations in the existing laws of the Union as may ameliorate the evils under which the country is laboring, and thereby cause confidence to exist, both at home and abroad, in our stability and integrity. — NORTON I, Emperor of the United States
In his peaceful and prosperous 21 year reign he made various moves that greatly strenghtened the great Empire.
After assuming absolute control over the country, he saw no further need for a legislature, and on October 12, 1859, he issued a decree formally abolishing the United States Congress. In it, Norton observed:
…fraud and corruption prevent a fair and proper expression of the public voice; that open violation of the laws are constantly occurring, caused by mobs, parties, factions and undue influence of political sects; that the citizen has not that protection of person and property which he is entitled
In an imperial decree the following month, Norton summoned the Army to depose the elected officials of the U.S. Congress:
WHEREAS, a body of men calling themselves the National Congress are now in session in Washington City, in violation of our Imperial edict of the 12th of October last, declaring the said Congress abolished; WHEREAS, it is necessary for the repose of our Empire that the said decree should be strictly complied with; NOW, THEREFORE, we do hereby Order and Direct Major-General Scott, the Command-in-Chief of our Armies, immediately upon receipt of this, our Decree, to proceed with a suitable force and clear the Halls of Congress.
The emperor’s orders were ignored by the Army, and Congress likewise continued without any formal acknowledgement of the decree. But our benevolent Emperor forgave those rebellious scum!
Our beloved emperor was also a visionary because he issued instructions to form League of Nations. If only those greedy and envious nation believed the vision of our great emperor!
In the remaining reign of the great emperor, he was loved and revered by his loyal subjects because of his countless projects and laws that greatly helped the empire.
Sadly, our Emperor died. His funeral was solemn, mournful, and large. Paying their respects were members of “all classes from capitalists to the pauper, the clergyman to the pickpocket, well-dressed ladies and those whose garb and bearing hinted of the social outcast”. Some accounts say as many as 30,000 attended.
The legacy of the late Emperor will never be forgotten. Mark Twain even modelized the king in the Adventures of Huckleberry Finn on him.
In fact, In January 1980, ceremonies were conducted in San Francisco to honor the 100th anniversary of the death of “the one and only Emperor of the United States”
So we must honor and remember not only the emperor we deserved, but also the leader we needed.
Source: Emperor Norton – Wikipedia