Washington, "first in war, first in peace, and first in the hearts of his countrymen."
Mount Rushmore Sculptures of George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Theodore Roosevelt and Abraham Lincoln
George Washington was the childless father of our nation.
Signing of the Constitution
Washington, who could not tell a lie, lost three siblings and his father at 11, lived in poverty, dropped out of school and lost all his teeth but one before he became President. No wonder he did not smile. He became a surveyor and dreamed of owning properties. He saved and bought a farm in Shenandoah Valley, West Virginia.
Washington traveled to Barbados at 19 with his older brother Lawrence, who was suffering from tuberculosis, with the hope that the climate would be beneficial to Lawrence's health. Lawrence died.
Washington contracted smallpox during the trip. It left his face slightly scarred, him infertile, but immunized him against future exposures to the dreaded disease. This was a boon, since the British practiced biowarfare with smallpox blankets.
Washington saved many lives innoculating Continental troops against smallpox during the Revolutionary War.
As a surveyor and military man awarded lands in western Pennsylvania for helping win the French and Indian War, he inherited land, married a popular widow between tours of duty and became the largest distiller, landowner and wealthiest native in the Colonies:
Mount Vernon Maps
Strong, six-foot tall popular dancer and dresser Washington gave his all with seven years in the Virginia House of Burgesses, as Commander in Chief of the Continental Army, Founding Father, Freemason, General, Militiaman, Surveyor, veteran of two wars, including the French and Indian start of the Seven Year's War, described by Sir Winston Churchill as The First World War:
Lieutenant General George Washington
During battle in the French and Indian War, Washington had two horses shot from underneath him, while his coat was pierced with four bullets. An Indian Chief who shot him repeatedly said he wanted to meet the man who would not die:
Washington Taking Control of the Continental Army, 1775
Washington's familiarity with British maneuvers, his personal commitment to the war of $450,000 in silver (>$100 M now), his relentless drilling discipline with gold from French Major General Marquis de Lafayette and Polish Inspector General Baron von Steuben, got them through Boston, Brandywine, Burgoyne, Caribbean, Charleston, Cowpens, Delaware River, East River, Germantown, Hudson River, King's Ferry, King's Mountain, Long Island, Monmouth, Morristown, Newport, New Windsor, New York City, Philadelphia, Princeton, Saratoga, Savannah, Stony Point, Trenton, Valley Forge, Verplamck's Point, West Point and Yorktown, though greatly outnumbered by Hessian mercenaries and Redcoats.
Washington Crossing the Delaware, December 25, 1776, by Emanuel Leutze, 1851
Washington and Lafayette at Valley Forge
During the war under frostbite and starvation conditions at Valley Forge, praying for stamina, succor and survival, Washington was said to have had a vision of the greater future of America's three trials:
That led him in 1791 to engage Freemason Major Pierre (Peter) Charles L'Enfant to design the District of Columbia with ancient Masonic symbolism for all time:
This included Washington's Tomb in the basement of the Capitol Rotunda Building under the shadowy angel Statue of Freedom:
By voluntarily resigning his commission and disbanding his army when the war was won (rather than declaring himself monarch), Washington permanently established the principle of civilian supremacy in military affairs.
General George Washington Resigning His Commission by John Trumbull, Capitol Rotunda (commissioned 1817)
The First Washington Monument in Baltimore
Washington's Farewell Address
Washington's Farewell Address, eventually issued as a published newspaper letter and pamphlet in 1796, was one of the most influential statements of representative government.
Drafted primarily by Washington himself, with the help from Hamilton, it gave advice on the necessity and importance of national union, the value of the Constitution and the rule of law, the evils of political parties and the proper virtues of citizen voters:
“Let me now take a more comprehensive view, and warn you in the most solemn manner against the baneful effects of the Spirit of Party...”
Washington referred to morality as "a necessary spring of popular government." He said, "Whatever may be conceded to the influence of refined education on minds of peculiar structure, reason and experience both forbid us to expect that national morality can prevail in exclusion of religious principle."
His farewell address warned against regionalism, foreign influence in domestic affairs and American meddling in European affairs. He warned against bitter partisanship in domestic politics. He called for Americans to move beyond partisanship and serve the common good.
“... One of the expedients of Party to acquire influence, within particular districts, is to misrepresent the opinions & aims of other Districts. You cannot shield yourselves too much against the jealousies & heart burnings which spring from these misrepresentations. They tend to render Alien to each other those who ought to be bound together by fraternal Affection."
Washington, despite the Revolutionary War support of France and Poland, cautioned against "permanent alliances with any portion of the foreign world."
He wrote the United States must concentrate primarily on American interests first.
Washington counseled neutrality, friendship and commerce with all nations.
He advised against involvement in European wars or entering into long-term "entangling" alliances.
His address quickly set American values regarding foreign affairs that lasted over a century of growing prosperity and are way overdue today as World War III invasion threatens.
Two years after leaving the Presidency, the father of our country was dead at 67, after three physicians removed half his blood to treat difficulty breathing and a sore throat.
(President Reagan survived loss of half his blood after shot by an exploding bullet lodged near his heart.)
Washington's faithful wife Martha burned their love letters. Memorial processions were held in major cities. Thousands wore mourning clothes for months. Washington was the only prominent Founding Father to arrange in his will for the freeing of all his inherited slaves following his death.
George Washington Masonic National Memorial
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