Saturday, February 20, 2010

Happy Birthday, President Washington!

George Washington by Peale 1823

I learned some fascinating things about George Washington while doing my research for this post. Washington has had quotes attributed to him that simply aren't his, and has often been misquoted, or quoted out of context. I tried my best to double-check the quotes I posted here.

This February 22nd, spend some time learning a little bit about the Father of Our Country. And do check out my links at the bottom!

....................................................................

My ardent desire is, and my aim has been... to comply strictly with all our engagements, foreign and domestic; but to keep the U States free from political connexions with every other Country. To see that they may be independent of all, and under the influence of none. In a word, I want an American character, that the powers of Europe may be convinced we act for ourselves and not for others; this, in my judgement, is the only way to be respected abroad and happy at home.

—Letter to Patrick Henry, October 9, 1775

....................................................................

A hundred thousand men, coming one after another, cannot move a Ton weight; but the united strength of 50 would transport it with ease.

—Letter to Dr. William Gordon, July 8, 1783

....................................................................

The best means of forming a manly, virtuous, and happy people will be found in the right education of youth. Without this foundation, every other means, in my opinion, must fail.

—Letter to George Chapman, December 15, 1784

....................................................................

Perfection falls not to the share of mortals.

—Letter to John Jay, August 1, 1786

....................................................................

Liberty, when it begins to take root, is a plant of rapid growth.

—Letter to James Madison, March 2, 1788

....................................................................

It should be the highest ambition of every American to extend his views beyond himself, and to bear in mind that his conduct will not only affect himself, his country, and his immediate posterity; but that its influence may be co-extensive with the world, and stamp political happiness or misery on ages yet unborn.

—Letter to the Legislature of Pennsylvania, September 5, 1789

....................................................................

To be prepared for war is one of the most effectual means of preserving peace.

—First Annual Address, to both Houses of Congress, January 8, 1790

....................................................................

In our progress toward political happiness my station is new; and if I may use the expression, I walk on untrodden ground. There is scarcely any part of my conduct which may not hereafter be drawn into precedent.

—Letter to Catherine Macaulay Graham, January 9, 1790

....................................................................

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

....................................................................

Observe good faith and justice towards all Nations; cultivate peace and harmony with all.'Tis our true policy to steer clear of permanent alliances with any portion of the foreign world.

—Farewell Address, September 19, 1796

....................................................................

The alternate domination of one faction over another, sharpened by the spirit of revenge, natural to party dissension, which in different ages and countries has perpetrated the most horrid enormities, is itself a frightful despotism. But this leads at length to a more formal and permanent despotism. The disorders and miseries, which result, gradually incline the minds of men to seek security and repose in the absolute power of an individual; and sooner or later the chief of some prevailing faction, more able or more fortunate than his competitors, turns this disposition to the purposes of his own elevation, on the ruins of Public Liberty.

—Farewell Address, September 19, 1796

....................................................................

Citizens by birth or choice of a common country, that country has a right to concentrate your affections. The name of American, which belongs to you, in your national capacity, must always exalt the just pride of Patriotism, more than any appellation derived from local discriminations.

—Farewell Address, September 19, 1796

....................................................................

I wish from my soul that the legislature of this State could see a policy of a gradual Abolition of Slavery.

—Letter to Lawrence Lewis, August 4, 1797


Here are some great links about the life of George Washington:
Just type in "Washington Sets Presidential Precedents" into the American History search box next to the Liberty Bell. There you will find a really good video on how Washington set the guidelines for the way the presidency would be run. After you watch it, there are more interesting Washington videos to the right side of the window.

9 comments:

La Petite Gallery said...

Thank you,

for all the time and effort you put into this.

I am a follower and enjoyed this.

yvonne

Eastlake Victorian said...

Thank you Yvonne! I'm glad you like it. Washington and Lincoln were my favorite presidents. We used to celebrate their birthdays separately when I was a kid.

-Pam

The Victorian Parlor said...

George Washington is one of my favorite presdients. Thanks for sharing this info!

Blessings,

Kim

Eastlake Victorian said...

You're welcome, Kim!

Diane said...

This is an absolutely striking portrait of George Washington!

Diane

Eastlake Victorian said...

I agree, Diane. It was painted by Rembrandt Peale in 1846.

-Pam

The Pink Birdhouse said...

Pam, wow you really did your research. i had no idea that so many quotes were from Washington. I especially love the one about educating the youth, because that one is particularly true even today! How amazing that he felt that way such a long time ago!

Thanks so much for all your encouraging comments on my most recent posts. you know how much they meant to me! XOXO Debby

Eastlake Victorian said...

Hi Debby-

I really didn't know Washington said such profound things, either, until I started to research for this post! He was truly a remarkable man.

I love visiting your blog. It is so warm and inviting, and it's fun finding out what you're up to all the way over in Germany!

-Pam

La Petite Gallery said...

Just came in for another peep,

yvonne

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...