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George Washington – The Father of Our Nation - A new insight

Posted by RALEIGH DEGEER AMYX on Tue, Feb 25, 2014 @ 09:00 AM

Gilbert Stuart Williamstown Portrait of George Washington resized 600

GEORGE WASHINGTON - THE ONLY PRESIDENT TO BE ELECTED UNANIMOUSLY

From early life until the end, George Washington (1732-1799) was faced with one difficult challenge after another. In every case, he put forth his best effort within the confines of limited resources. He proved to be a determined, hard-working man who was gifted with extraordinary leadership qualities. His role in the formation of the United States of America compares to none.

Early Life

George Washington’s father, Augustine Washington was primarily a tobacco farmer, although he was engaged with many other industries at various times. He married Jane Butler and together they had three children. Sadly, Jane died very young and a few years after her death, Augustine married Mary Ball. Together they had six children; the eldest of whom was George Washington.

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ORIGINAL PAINTING OF GEORGE WASHINGTON WITH HIS FATHER AUGUSTINE - THE FUTURE PRESIDENT WAS TO LOSE HIS FATHER WHEN HE WAS ONLY 11

Unfortunately when George Washington was only 11 years old, his father passed away. As a result, George was unable to travel abroad for his education. He was home schooled by a church sexton until he was 15. The family was unable to send him to college. Because of his love for knowledge, George Washington took it upon himself to develop practical skills as well. During his teens, he mastered growing tobacco, raising livestock and surveying land.

Employment

It was George Washington's surveying skills that were most valued at the time. Lawrence Washington, George’s older half-brother and guardian, had married into the family of Lord Fairfax, a very important figure at that time. After gaining some practical experience, George was appointed as the official surveyor of Culpeper County, Virginia. This experience expanded Washington's knowledge and interest in land ownership, and moved him ever closer to his associating with other influential Virginia wealthy land owners.

george washington framed land survey 1 resized 600

AN HISTORIC SURVEY DRAFTED BY FOUNDING FATHER GEORGE WASHINGTON, AT AGE 18  - FROM THE RALEIGH DEGEER AMYX COLLECTION

Illness

George Washington’s brother Lawrence Washington was plagued with Tuberculosis. It was determined that the best course of action was for Lawrence to take a trip to a tropical destination in the hope that exposure to a warmer climate would cure his illness. While accompanying his brother to Barbados, George Washington caught Small Pox. Although George Washington’s constitution was strong enough to fully recover from the illness, his brother became even more ill in the tropical climate. After returning home, Lawrence Washington passed away, leaving George as the family patriarch. A few years later, George Washington was the sole heir of the Washington lands. He moved into the Mt. Vernon estate, where he lived until his death.

 

wasshington plate|washington presidential china|washington society of cincinnati|

THE "HOLY GRAIL" OF PRESIDENTIAL CHINA COLLECTING  FROM THE RALEIGH DEGEER AMYX COLLECTION - IN NEAR PRISTINE CONDITION - 9 5/8" SOCIETY OF CINCINNATTI PLATE, AS ORDERED BY GEORGE WASHINGTON IN 1786  THIS RARE PLATE WAS USED BY GENERAL WASHINGTON AT MOUNT VERNON, NEW YORK AND PHILADELPHIA - LATER IT WAS USED BY ROBERT E. LEE AT LEE'S ARLINGTON HOUSE  NOW A PART OF THE ARLINGTON NATIONAL CEMETERY

Marriage

It was 1859 when 27 years of age,  George Washington married Martha Dandridge Custis. She was a wealthy widow with two young children, John and Martha. With the addition of her 18,000-acre estate to his own land holdings, George Washington had suddenly become one of the more prominent land-owners in all of Virginia. By all accounts, the couple was very affectionate with the children, although they actually never had any children of their own. When John died at war, the couple adopted two of his four children. The characteristics of their marital relationship were never made public. Although they wrote many letters to one another, Martha Washington elected to burn nearly all, to preserve their privacy. This was a personal decision that  has resulted in historic voids that plague historians to this very day.

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PRESIDENT GEORGE WASHINGTON AND FIRST LADY MARTHA WASHINGTON

Public Servant

George Washington was put in charge of the Virginia Militia, with no major prior experience. Although his strategies were not always successful, he was quite gifted in maintaining morale among the troops, even under the most trying conditions. Washington later resigned and returned to Mt. Vernon where he was elected to the Virginia House of Burgesses.

Presidency

George Washington was unanimously elected President of the United States (1789-1797). Because the White House was not yet built, George Washington was inaugurated in New York. Being mindful that his every action would be considered a precedent for future presidents, George Washington made a point to be fair, demonstrating leadership, prudence and integrity in all respects.

WASHINGTON   MOUNT VERNON COLOR CIRCA 1790

GEORGE WASHINGTON'S PERSONAL RESIDENCE  MOUNT VERNON - A STUNING ESTATE OVERLOOKING THE POTOMAC RIVER NEAR WASHINGTON, D.C.

Retirement

After retiring from the presidency, George Washington returned to his Mt. Vernon estate. For 3 years he worked to restore the condition of his neglected farmland. After personally inspecting his lands during the cold of winter, George Washington suddenly became ill and died on December 14, 1799, in large part due to medical malpractice.  Washington's ever evolving character was further expressed in his will, as he declared that all of the slaves under his care were to be freed. His legacy provides an impeccable example for every American.

Collector

World-renowned collector Raleigh DeGeer Amyx has spent several decades acquiring museum-quality artifacts. Among his historical pieces is one of the land surveys that was prepared by George Washington. Mr. Amyx has been fortunate to acquire many artifacts that were possessed by U.S. Presidents, First Ladies, and other important figures. He has sometimes provided consulting to the Smithsonian as well as government and private entities. Please feel free to contact Mr. Amyx using the form below.

RALEIGH DEGEER AMYX

HISTORIAN & COLLECTOR RALEIGH DeGEER AMYX - ON A RESEARCH MISSION AT THE LIBRARY OF CONGRESS

 

 

 

 

 


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