Early and important handwritten draft by Ronald Reagan for his first inaugural address as governor of California, six pages, 8.5 x 10.75, delivered on January 5, 1967. A partial draft of the beginning of Reagan's historic first inaugural address as governor, differing substantially from the speech as delivered but maintaining many of the same phrases and concepts. The speech begins: "To a number of us this is a first and hence a solemn & momentous occasion and yet on the broad page of state & national history it is almost a commonplace routine. We are participating in the orderly transfer of administrative authority by direction of the people. What makes this commonplace routine a near miracle to much of the world is the continuing fact that the people relinquish this authority yet remain its custodian with power to delegate or withhold as they see fit. There has been a question raised in recent years as to whether the people are capable of exercising this right. Some have used the temporary authority granted by the people to give govt. control not only of the means of production but also of those who produce. Always this is explained as being for the people's ultimate good. But if the people are incapable of governing themselves—where will we find those capable of governing them? Govt. is the peoples business. Every man, woman & child is a paying participant. We who have been elected to Const. office or to the legislature are of the people, chosen by them to see that no permanent structure of govt. is ever allowed to encroach on the people's freedom and that such laws and regulations as we have are those designed to keep any individual or group from infringing on the rights of another. It is inconceivable to me that anyone could accept this delegated authority without asking God's help. I pray that we who legislate & administer will not be misled by false prophets offering easy expedients. I pray that with his divine guidance we act wisely to build a state where liberty under law & justice can triumph; where compassion can govern and where the people can participate in & prosper because of govt. and not in spite of it." Reagan goes on to discuss the path forward for the state and nation, outlines some specific proposals and programs, and sets forth policies related to education, fiscal responsibility, and crime control. In fine condition. This remarkable autograph manuscript offers a behind-the-scenes look at Ronald Reagan's development of his inaugural address for his first term as governor of California. While many of the themes and sentences used here remain in the speech as delivered, the final draft became more polished and precise than this early version—which is full of Reagan's own strike-throughs and emendations. Take, for example, the end of the opening paragraph of the published version: 'We are participating in the orderly transfer of administrative authority by direction of the people. And this is the simple magic which makes a commonplace routine a near miracle to many of the world's inhabitants: The continuing fact that the people, by democratic process, can delegate this power, yet retain custody of it.' The final version retains the sentiment and some of the phrasing found in this draft, but in a more refined mode. Thus, in these edits and revisions, we see the 'Great Communicator' as he hones his craft while coming into political power.