Founding Father Quotes

A collection of quotes from the authors of the Declaration of Independance and the Constitution of the United States.
George

George Washington

United States Founding Father(1732 - 1799)
  1. Quotes
  2. Biography
  3. Picture
  4. More...
  5. Discussion

Events in the life of George Washington

Date

Event


1775 06/15   George Washington appointed general and commander-in-chief of the new Continental Army.
1776 12/26   Washington crosses the Delaware River and captures a Hessian force (German mercenaries) at Trenton, New Jersey
1777 09/11   General Washington defeated at Brandywine  [URL]
1778 07/08   General Washington sets up headquarters at West Point
1783 11/2   George Washington delivers farewell address  [URL]
1783 12/23   Washington resigns his commission as commander-in-chief to the Congress of the Confederation.  [URL]
1784 01/14   The Treaty of Paris is ratified by Congress and the American Revolutionary War officially ends.
George Washington Signature

George Washington Biography [Text Version]


FIRST IN War - first in Peace - first in the hearts of his Countrymen - was a just sentiment uttered half a century ago by the foster-son' of the Great Patriot, when speaking of the character of his noble guardian. And the hand of that son was the first to erect a monumental stone in memory of The Father of his Country, upon which was inscribed: Here, the of February [0. S.l, 1732, George Washington was born. That stone yet lies on the site of his birth-place, in Westmoreland county, Virginia, near the banks of the Potomac. The calendar having been changed, 2 we celebrate his birthday on the 22d of February.
George Washington was descended from an old and titled family in Lancashire, England, and was the eldest child of his father, by Mary Ball, his second wife. He died v/hen George was little more than ten years of age, and the guidance of the future Leader, through the dangers of youthhood, devolved upon his mother. She was fitted for the service ; and during his eventful life, Washington regarded the early graining of his mother with the deepest gratitude.
He received a common English education, and upon that, a naturally thoughtful and right-conditioned mind, laid the foundation of future greatness. Truth and justice were the cardinal virtues of his character. He was always beloved by his young companions, and was always chosen their leader in military plays. At the age of fourteen years, he wished to enter the navy, but yielded to the discouraging persuasions of his mother; and when he was seventeen years old, he was one of the most accomplished land surveyors in Virginia. In the forest rambles incident to his profession, ho learned much of the topography of the country, habits of the Indians, and life in the camp. These we're stern but useful lessons of great value in his future life.
Young Washington was appointed one of the adjutants-general of his state at the ago of nineteen, but soon resigned his commission to accompany an invalid half-brother to the West Indies. Two years later, when the French began to build forts southward of Lake Erie, he was sent by the royal governor of Virginia, to demand a cessation of such hostile movements. He performed the delicate mission with great credit; and so highly were his services esteemed, that when, in 1755, Braddock came to drive the French from the vicinity of the
Ohio, Washington was chosen his principal aid. The young Leader had already

1. George Washington Parke Custis, grandson of Mrs. Washington, and Adopted son of the distinguished patriot.
2. In consequence of the difference between the whole Roman year and the true solar year, of a little more than eleven minutes, the astronomical equinox fell back that amount of time, each yearly cycle, toward the beginning of the year. It fell on the 21st of March, at the time of the council of Nice, in 323. Pope Gregory the Thirteenth reformed the calendar in 182 (when the equinox fell on the 11th of March,) by suppressing ten days in the calendar, and thus restoring the equinox to the 2lst of March. The Protestant states of Europe adhered to the old calendar, until 1700 ; and popular prejudice in England opposed the alterations, until 1752, when the Julian calendar, called Old Style, was abolished by Pailiament.
Now the difference is about twelve days, so that Washington's birth-day, according to the New Style, is on the 23d of February.

3. Young Washington was playing in a field one day with another boy, when he leaped upon an untamed colt belonging to his mother. The frightened animal used such great exertions to get rid of his rider, that he burst a blood vessel and died. George went immediately to his mother, and gave her a truthful relation of all that had happened. This is a noble example for all boys.
been in that wilderness at the head of a military expedition, and performed his duty so well, that he was publicly thanked by the Virginia legislature. Braddock was defeated and killed, and his whole army escaped utter destruction only through the skill and valor of Colonel Washington, in directing their retreat.' He continued in active military service most of the time, until the close of 1758, when he resigned his commission, and retired to private life.

At the age of twenty-seven years, Washington married the beautiful Martha Custis, the young widow of a wealthy Virginia planter, and they took up their abode at Mount Vernon, on the banks of the Potomac, in estate left him by his half-brother. There he quietly pursued the business of a farmer until the Spring of 1774, when he was chosen to fill a seat in the Virginia legislature. The storm of the great revolution was then gathering; and toward the close of Summer he was elected a delegate to the first Continental Congress, which assembled at Philadelphia, in September. He was a delegate the following year, when the storm burst on Bunker Hill, after the first lightning flash at Lexington; and by the unanimous voice of his compatriots he was chosen commander-in-chief of the army of freemen which had gathered spontaneously around Boston.

For eight long years Washington directed the feeble armies of the revolted colonies, in their struggle for independence. That was a terrible ordeal through which the people of America passed! During the night of gloom which brooded over the hopes of the patriots from the British invasion of New York, until the capture of Cornwallis, he was the lode-star of their hopes. And when the blessed morning of Peace dawned at Yorktown, and the last hoof of the oppressor had left our shores, Washington was hailed as the Deliverer of his people; and he was regarded by the aspirants for freedom in the eastern hemisphere as the brilliant day-star of promise to future generations.

During all the national perplexities after the return of peace, incident to financial embarrassments and an imperfect system of government, Washington was regarded, still, as the public leader; and when a convention assembled to modify the existing government, he was chosen to preside over their deliberations. And again, when the labors of that convention resulted in the formation of our Federal Constitution, and a president of the United States was to be chosen, according to its provisions, his countrymen, with unanimous voice, called him to the highest place of honor in the gift of a free people.

Washington presided over the affairs of the new Republic for eight years, and those the most eventful in its history. A new government had to be organized without any existing model, and new theories of government were to be put in practice for the first time. The domestic and foreign policy of the country had to be settled by legislation and diplomacy, and many exciting questions had to be met and answered. To guide the ship of state through the rocks and quicksands of all these difficulties required great executive skill and wisdom. Washington possessed both; and he retired from the theatre of public life without the least stain of reproach upon his judgment or his intentions.

The great Patriot and Sage enjoyed the repose of domestic life, at Mount Vernon, in the midst of an affectionate family and the almost daily congratulations of visitors, for almost three years, when the effects of a heavy cold closed his brilliant career, in death. He ascended to the bosom of his God on the 14th of December, 1799, when almost sixty-eight years of age.

1. Braddook persisted in fighting: (ha Indians according to the military tactics of Europe and when Washington modestly .' Suggested (he policy of adopting the Indian method of warfare, it is said that Braddook haughtily answered, " What I a provincial buskin teach a British general how to fight !''

2. His body was placed in the old vault, at Mount Vernon. Afterwards, in accordance with his instructions, a new vault was constructed, with a spacious vestibule. In the latter may be seen two white marble coffins containing the remains of Washington and his wife.

SOURCE: Eminent Americans - By Benson J. Lossing (Published 1886)

More Information about George Washington

Religion: Episcopalian
George Washington on Wikipedia | Amazon | Google

Documents from our document library

Biography for George Washington

((1732 - 1799)) Biography for George Washington
Document Type: (File Size: 8.27K)
George Washington

Washington Speech to the Officers of the Continental Army

(03-15-1783) Gentlemen: By an anonymous summons, an attempt has been made to convene you together; how inconsistent with the rules of propriety! how unmilitary! and how subversive of all order and discipline, let the good sense of the Army decide.
Document Type: (File Size: 9.29K)
George Washington

Washington Farwell Orders to Armies

(11-02-1783) Washingtons Farewell Orders to the Armies of the United States, 2 November 1783 - The United States in Congress assembled after giving the most honorable testimony to the merits of the foederal Armies, and presenting them with the thanks of their Country
Document Type: (File Size: 9.31K)
George Washington

Washington Address Continental Congress

(12-23-1783) Washington's Address to the Continental Congress Resigning His Commission as Commander in Chief of the Continental Army - Mr. President: The great events on which my resignation depended having at length taken place; I have now the honor of offering my si
Document Type: (File Size: 2.15K)
George Washington

Websites about George Washington



Documents from The Digital Public Library of America

There are currenlty are 36706 items in the DLPA for George Washington, only 25 are displayed here.

George Washington
Date: c. 1786
Dallas Museum of Art
George Washington
Date: 1929
Type: text
Bibliography: p. 465-473.
University of California
George Washington /
Date: 1912
Type: text
Also published in English under same title.
University of California
George Washington
Date: 1886
Type: text
New York Public Library
George Washington
Date: [1921]
Type: text
Sources": p. 105.
Library of Congress
George Washington
Date: [1963]
Type: text
First published in 1896.
University of California
George Washington
Type: image
George Arents Collection. The New York Public Library
George Washington
Type: image
George Arents Collection. The New York Public Library
[George Washington.]
Date: 1827 - 1872
Type: image
Wallach Division: Print Collection. The New York Public Library
[George Washington.]
Date: 1870-1870
Type: image
Wallach Division: Print Collection. The New York Public Library
[George Washington.]
Type: image
Wallach Division: Print Collection. The New York Public Library
George Washington
Date: 1810-1810
Type: image
Wallach Division: Print Collection. The New York Public Library
[George] Washington
Date: 1850-1850
Type: image
Wallach Division: Print Collection. The New York Public Library
George Washington
Date: 1870-1870
Type: image
Wallach Division: Print Collection. The New York Public Library
George Washington
Type: image
Wallach Division: Print Collection. The New York Public Library
George Washington
Date: 1866-1866
Type: image
Wallach Division: Print Collection. The New York Public Library
[George Washington.]
Date: 1800-1800
Type: image
Wallach Division: Print Collection. The New York Public Library
George Washington
Type: image
George Arents Collection. The New York Public Library
George Washington
Date: 1830-1830
Type: image
Wallach Division: Print Collection. The New York Public Library
George Washington
Type: image
Wallach Division: Print Collection. The New York Public Library
[George Washington.]
Type: image
Wallach Division: Print Collection. The New York Public Library
[George Washington.]
Date: 1860-1860
Type: image
Wallach Division: Print Collection. The New York Public Library
[George Washington.]
Date: 1862-1862
Type: image
Wallach Division: Print Collection. The New York Public Library
[George] Washington
Type: image
Wallach Division: Print Collection. The New York Public Library
[George Washington]
Type: text
Printed in red and blue ink.
University of South Carolina. Irvin Department of Rare Books and Special Collections
See all the items for "George Washington" at the Digital Public Library of America

Quotes by George Washington


Every post is honorable in which a man can serve his country.

-= letter to Benedict Arnold, September 14, 1775 =-

For myself the delay [in assuming the office of the President] may be compared with a reprieve; for in confidence I assure you, with the world it would obtain little credit that my movements to the chair of Government will be accompanied by feelings not unlike those of a culprit who is going to the place of his execution: so unwilling am I, in the evening of a life nearly consumed in public cares, to quit a peaceful abode for an Ocean of difficulties, without that competency of political skill, abilities and inclination which is necessary to manage the helm.

-= comment to General Henry Knox, March 1789 =-

Gentlemen, you will permit me to put on my spectacles, for, I have grown not only gray, but almost blind in the service of my country. George Washington, upon fumbling for his glasses before delivering the

-= Newburgh Address, March 15, 1783 =-

Guard against the impostures of pretended patriotism.

-= Farewell Address, September 19, 1796 =-

Happy, thrice happy shall they be pronounced hereafter, who have contributed any thing, who have performed the meanest office in erecting this stupendous fabrick of Freedom and Empire on the broad basis of Independency; who have assisted in protecting the rights of humane nature and establishing an Asylum for the poor and oppressed of all nations and religions.

-= General Orders, April 18, 1783 =-

Harmony, liberal intercourse with all Nations, are recommended by policy, humanity and interest. But even our Commercial policy should hold an equal and impartial hand: neither seeking nor granting exclusive favours or preferences; consulting the natural course of things; diffusing and diversifying by gentle means the streams of Commerce, but forcing nothing; establishing with Powers so disposed; in order to give trade a stable course.

-= Farewell Address, September 19, 1796 =-

Having now finished the work assigned me, I retire from the great theatre of Action; and bidding an Affectionate farewell to this August body under whose orders I have so long acted, I here offer my commission, and take my leave of all the employments of public life.

-= Address to Congress on Resigning his Commission, December 23, 1783 =-

I am principled against this kind of traffic in the human species...and to disperse the families I have an aversion.

-= letter to Robert Lewis, August 18, 1799 =-

I can truly say I had rather be at Mount Vernon with a friend or two about me, than to be attended at the Seat of Government by the Officers of State and the Representatives of every Power in Europe.

-= letter to David Stuart, June 15, 1790 =-

I give my signature to many Bills with which my Judgment is at variance.... From the Nature of the Constitution, I must approve all parts of a Bill, or reject it in total. To do the latter can only be Justified upon the clear and obvious grounds of propriety; and I never had such confidence in my own faculty of judging as to be over tenacious of the opinions I may have imbibed in doubtful cases.

-= letter to Edmund Pendleton, September 23, 1793 =-

I had always hoped that this land might become a safe and agreeable asylum to the virtuous and persecuted part of mankind, to whatever nation they might belong.

-= letter to Francis Van der Kamp, May 28, 1788 =-

I have always considered marriage as the most interesting event of one`s life, the foundation of happiness or misery.

-= letter to Burwell Bassett, May 23, 1785 =-

I have often expressed my sentiments, that every man, conducting himself as a good citizen, and being accountable to God alone for his religious opinions, ought to be protected in worshipping the Deity according to the dictates of his own conscience.

-= letter to the General Committee of the United Baptist Churches in Virginia, May, 1789 =-

I hope, some day or another, we shall become a storehouse and granary for the world.

-= letter to Marquis de Lafayette, June 19, 1788 =-

I now make it my earnest prayer, that God would have you, and the State over which you preside, in his holy protection, that he would incline the hearts of the Citizens to cultivate a spirit of subordination and obedience to Government, to entertain a brotherly affection and love for one another, for their fellow Citizens of the United States at large, and particularly for their brethren who have served in the Field, and finally, that he would most graciously be pleased to dispose us all, to do Justice, to love mercy, and to demean ourselves with that Charity, humility and pacific temper of mind, which were the Characteristicks of the Divine Author of our blessed Religion, and without an humble imitation of whose example in these things, we can never hope to be a happy Nation.

-= circular letter of farewell to the Army, June 8, 1783 =-


 << Prev 15   Next 15 >>

Showing results 16 to 30 of 114