February 21, 2011 by staff
George Washington, George Washington (February 22, 1732 – December 14, 1799) was the dominant military and political leader of the new United States of America from 1775 to 1799. He led the American victory over Great Britain in the Revolutionary War as commander in chief of the Continental Army in 1775-1783, and chaired the drafting of the Constitution in 1787. As the unanimous choice to be the first president of the United States (1789-1797), he developed the forms and rituals of government that have been used, such as the use of a cabinet system and delivering a speech Inaugural. As president, he built a strong and well funded national who avoided war, rebellion suppressed and gained acceptance among Americans of all types, and Washington is now known as the “father of the fatherland”.
In colonial Virginia, Washington was born in the provincial nobility in a rich and well connected family that owned tobacco plantations using slave labor. He was educated at home by his father and older brother, but both died young, and he clung to the powerful clan Fairfax, who has advanced his career as a surveyor and soldier. Strong, brave, eager to fight and a natural leader, the young Washington quickly became a senior officer of the colonial forces, 1754-58, during the early stages of the French and Indian War. Indeed, his actions precipitated a rash war. Washington experience, his military bearing, his leadership of the Patriot cause in Virginia, and his political base in the largest settlement made him the obvious choice of the Second Continental Congress in 1775 as commander in chief of the Continental Army fight the British in the American Revolution. He forced the British from Boston in 1776, but was defeated and captured by later this year when he lost in New York. After crossing the Delaware River in the heart of winter, he defeated the enemy in two battles, taken in New Jersey, and restored momentum to the cause patriot. Because of his strategy, Revolutionary forces captured two major British armies at Saratoga in 1777 and Yorktown in 1781. Negotiating with Congress, governors, and his French allies, he served as an army of small and fragile nation amid the threats of disintegration and invasion. Historians give the commander in chief high marks for its selection and supervision of his generals, his encouragement of the morale, coordination with state governors and militia units of the state, its relations with Congress, and attention to procurement, logistics and training. In battle, however, British generals have repeatedly operated Washington with larger armies. Washington is given credit for policies that forced the British evacuation of Boston in 1776 and the surrender of Yorktown in 1781. After the victory was completed in 1783, Washington resigned rather than takes power, and returned to his Mount Vernon plantation, showing his opposition to dictatorship and his commitment to republican government.
Washington presided over the Constitutional Convention that drafted the Constitution of the United States in 1787 because of his dissatisfaction with the weaknesses of the Articles of Confederation had repeatedly impeded the war effort. Washington became the first president of the United States in 1789. He tried to bring warring factions together to unify the nation. He supported Alexander Hamilton programs to pay all state and national debt, implementing an effective tax system, and create a national bank, despite the opposition of Thomas Jefferson. Washington proclaimed neutrality of United States in the wars raging in Europe after 1793. He avoided war with Britain and guarantee a decade of peace and profitable business by providing the Jay Treaty in 1795, despite intense opposition from the Jeffersonians. Although never officially joining the Federalist Party, he supported its programs. Washington, “Farewell Address” was a primer in influence on republican virtue and a stern warning against sectarianism, bigotry, and participation in foreign wars.
Washington had a vision of a great and powerful nation that would be built on the Republican line with the federal government. He sought to use the national government to improve infrastructure, opening western lands to create a national university, to promote trade, has found a capital (later named Washington, DC), reduce regional tensions and promote a spirit of nationalism. “The name of America,” he said, must prevail over any local attachment. At his death, Washington was hailed as “first in war, first in peace and first in the hearts of his countrymen. “Federalists made him the symbol of their party, but for many years the Jeffersonians continued to be wary of its influence and has delayed construction of the Washington Monument. As a leader of the first successful revolution against a colonial empire in world history, Washington has become an international icon for freedom and nationalism. The symbolism echoes particularly in France and Latin America. Historical researchers still classify it as one of the two or three greatest presidents.
In 1752, Washington was launched in Freemasonry.At its inauguration in 1789; the Grand Master of the Grand Lodge of New York administered the oath of office. On September 18, 1793, he laid the foundation stone of the Capitol of the United States on all Masonic Grand Master Award. (This ceremony was recreated in 1993 the bicentennial of the Capitol.) Washington had a great esteem for the Masonic Order and often praised, but rarely attended meetings of the lodge. He was attracted by the movement’s dedication to the principles of rationality of the Enlightenment, reason and fraternal lodges Americans do not share the view that anti-clerical made the dressing so controversial European
On the eve of the anniversary of George Washington, Jesse Washington, Associated Press writer examines why the name of the founding father now belongs primarily to African-Americans. The 2000 U.S. Census counted 163,036 people whose name is in Washington, 90 percent were black – a percentage much higher than any other name. Washington wrote:
The story of how Washington became the “black name” begins with slavery and takes a turn after the Civil War, when all blacks were allowed the dignity of a surname.
In choosing the name, he said, Blacks reconstruction of the time could show pride in the history of the nation, as George Washington, who died in 1799, was still very popular at the time. Alternatively, the name could have been a way of maintaining links with the plantation owners who continued to be powerful regional figures after the Civil War. Again, “is a myth,” wrote Washington, “that black slaves were the most the surname of their owner.”
For example, “only a handful of” slaves of George Washington had his name. According to Mary Thompson, a historian at Washington Mount Vernon plantation, the president had the most to be only a first name – and despite the abolitionist writings he left behind, he owned hundreds of slaves. Washington led the schizoid life, “says biographer Ron Chernow.” In theory and on paper, he was opposed to slavery, but it was still zealously monitor and trying to recover his slaves who escaped. ” (Daughter Martha Washington, Oney Judge, escaped while the family lived in Philadelphia. Washington abused his presidential powers by asking the Treasury Department to kidnap the judge of his new life in New Hampshire, Chernow says, but the plot failed.)
[Source: via wikipedia and and various online sources]
[Source: image via WWW.GLOGSTER.COM]
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