George Washington

Essay by Squeaky ChaplinJunior High, 9th gradeA+, April 1997

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George Washington

He was born 1732 and he died in 1799.

George Washington seems today a figure larger than life itself.....almost as he was when he was a familiar person in the halls, homes, shops, and bars of 18th-century city Williamsburg.

On Duke of Gloucester Street, in the Raleigh Tavern's Apollo Room, or the Governor's Palace Gardens, his powerful frame and his nice attitude..his presence....drew to him the notice that wrote his place in the history of the city, the state, and the nation.

'His bones and joints are large, as are his hands and feet,' friend of Washington George Mercer observed in 1760. He said Washington kept 'all the muscles of his face under perfect control, though flexible and expressive of deep feeling when moved by emotion. In conversation he looks you full in the face, is deliberate, deferential and engaging. His voice is agreeable . . . he is a splendid horseman.'

Thomas Jefferson who served with Washington in the House of Burgesses, wrote: 'On the whole, his character was, in its mass, perfect, in nothing bad, in a few points indifferent; and it may truly be said, that never did nature and fortune combine more perfectly to make a man great, and to place him in the same constellation with whatever worthies have merited from man an everlasting remembrance.'

In Williamsburg, when it was the seat of Virginia's government, Washington secured his first military commissions, learned and practiced the arts of politics, and moved from the attitude of being just another country squire to become the leader of a continental revolution.

Born February 22, 1732 in Westmoreland County he was the first son of his father Augustine's second marriage: his mother was the former Mary Ball of Epping Forest. When George was about 3 his family moved...