Now, as a rough rule of thumb, we generally think of a month as having 30 days, on average, so someone who does a quickie mental calculation on April 20, might surmise that June 20 is 60 days hence. That's probably the mistake one of our ancestors made and no one has caught it until now?
Two months is 60 days only in leap years and only if one adds the 31 in January or March to the 29 in February. Otherwise, at no time does the number of days in adjacent months add up to 60.
June 20 is unarguably two months from the date of Lincoln's signing, but the proclamation does not say "two months." It is a binding legal document making permanent law, and it plainly says "sixty days."
As we have seen, 60 days, including the signing date, takes us to June 18.
Even if some legal-eagle sharpshooter tries to somehow stretch the interpretation to exclude the signing date (which Lincoln did not), we still can't reach June 20.
So Montani Semper Liberi! and happy belated June 18 Sesquicentennial, my fellow West Virginians! Melius tarde, quam nunquam. (Better late than never.) Shall we change the State Seal art, which shows June 20? The West Virginia Day holiday? Or get a new "birth certificate" from President Obama that "adjusts" the wording?
Non credis alienis calculos. (Never trust other people's math.)
Cook is an author, artist and inventor who lives in Hurricane and learned arithmetic in public schools of both Virginias.