Do NOT Copy

Do NOT Copy

Our Founding Father

Our Friend Ben has posted some wonderfully interesting facts about George Washington on Poor Richard's Almanac today. Go check out the quiz and test your knowledge! As you may be aware, February 22 (1732) is George Washington's birthday. He is the whole reason that we celebrated President's Day last week, although many assume that it is celebrated for both Washington and Lincoln's birthdays.

While I don't want to steal their thunder, I found some rather interesting facts that Peanut had no interest in sharing for her project. We had to sign an agreeement which we sent to the teacher to help our children to do the work. I helped her do research and some writing of some of the more detailed information which would have taken up too much space at the rate she was going. What better way to use my "useless" knowledge than to blog about it????

George Washington was a man who did several feats that no president who succeeded him has ever done. He was inaugurated in two different cities, New York and Philadelphia. Most inaugurations take place in the capital which is now Washington, D.C. No other president was ever elected unanimously. He received all 69 electoral votes. Not just once, but twice! There was no popular vote at that time. The white house was not completed until after his death so he never lived in it, he is the only president who did not live there.

A temporary capital was set up in New York City where Washington took his first oath of office. The first permanent capital city was Philadelphia where it remained for ten years until the city of Washington D.C. was constructed. Hamilton made plans of a grand capital city. In order to encourage the wealthy souhtern congress men of the merits of this plan, they chose an area in the south to build this city. Washington chose the site of the future city. This helped to secure the finances needed to take on this large time consuming project.

His cabinet was rather small compared to those of present day. It consisted of only 4 men. Henry Knox was his Secretary of War, Alexander Hamilton was Secretary of the Treasury, Secretary of State was Thomas Jefferson, and the Attorney General was Edmund Randolph. Jefferson and Hamilton often held a difference of opinion and by 1795 both had quit the cabinet. They each began a political party which shared their beliefs. This caused Washington unrest as he felt that political parties posed a danger to the fledgling governement.

He had over 100 slaves of his own which he later freed. He was the only founding father to free his slaves. While he was able to free his own slaves, he was unable to free his wife's slaves. His wife was a wealthy widowed woman who had two children. If he had not married her, he would have never owned his beloved Mount Vernon where he was buried. The two of them never had any children together. Some historians presume it was because some illnesses he had suffered left him sterile while others might tell you that he loved another woman.

Thank you for stopping by. Please leave me a message. I'd love to hear your thoughts!



tina said...

Very interesting. I wonder if politics were less cumbersome back then with only 4 cabinet members. And of course all men. Glad we've left those times behind.

Nola @ the Alamo said...

Ooooh, I never heard the hint that GW might have loved another woman. I haven't seen too much about GW, but the History Channel has had lots of programming lately on Lincoln. Funny how I find it so interesting now, but when I was younger, wouldn't have watched it for anything!

Dawn said...

I never heard about him loving another either, interesting.

our friend Ben said...

Thanks for mentioning Poor Richard's, Cinj! Your facts are all fascinating. From what I've read, George and Martha never hit it off in the bedroom, which might have accounted for the lack of children. Birthing was quite a primitive process, and Martha might have developed an infection after her second childbirth that left her sterile. And, of course, STDs like syphilis were so rampant and so little understood at the time that men often contracted them, then brought them home to their wives, resulting in sterility, insanity, death, and all sorts of other horrific side effects. However, I've never heard of Washington's being accused of having syphilis, and his and Martha's rationality and good health late in life argue against this last explanation. As you say, he might have simply been sterile. Guess we'll never know!