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George Washington

1st President of the United States
(April 30, 1789 to March 3, 1797)

Nickname: "Father of His Country"

Born: February 22, 1732, in Westmoreland County, Virginia
Died: December 14, 1799, at Mount Vernon, Virginia

Father: Augustine Washington
Mother: Mary Ball Washington
Married: Martha Dandridge Custis (1732-1802), on January 6, 1759
Children: John "Jack" Parke Custis (adopted); Martha "Patsy" Custis (adopted)

Religion: Episcopalian
Education: No formal education
Occupation: Planter, Soldier
Political Party: Federalist
Other Government Positions:

  • Member of Virginia House of Burgesses, 1759-74

  • Member of Continental Congress, 1774-75

  • Chairman of the Constitutional Convention, 1787-88

Presidential Salary: $25,000/year (refused by Washington)

Presidential Election Results:



Electoral Votes


George Washington



tiny U.S. flag John Adams



John Jay



R. H. Harrison



John Rutledge



John Hancock



George Clinton



Samuel Huntington



John Milton



James Armstrong



Benjamin Lincoln



Edward Telfair



(Votes Not Cast)



George Washington



tiny U.S. flag John Adams



George Clinton



tiny U.S. flag Thomas Jefferson



Aaron Burr



tiny U.S. flag John Adams



tiny U.S. flag Thomas Jefferson



Thomas Pinckney



Aaron Burr



Samuel Adams



Oliver Ellsworth



George Clinton



John Jay



James Iredell



George Washington



John Henry



S. Johnston



Charles C. Pinckney


Vice President: tiny U.S. flag John Adams (1789-97)


Secretary of State

John Jay (1789-90)

tiny U.S. flag Thomas Jefferson (1790-93)

Edmund Randolph (1794-95)

Timothy Pickering (1795-97)

Secretary of the Treasury

Alexander Hamilton (1789-95)

Oliver Wolcott, Jr. (1795-97)

Secretary of War

Henry Knox (1789-94)

Timothy Pickering (1795-96)

James McHenry (1796-97)

Attorney General

Edmund Randolph (1790-94)

William Bradford (1794-95)

Charles Lee (1795-97)

Notable Events:

  • 1789

    • The Judiciary Act specified the number of Federal courts and judges.

  • 1790

    • Supreme Court met for the first time with John Jay as the Chief Justice.

  • 1791

    • Federal capital established in swamplands on the Potomac.

    • A national banking system established by the Bank Act.

    • The Bill of Rights take effect.

  • 1792

    • Post Office established by Congress as a separate entity.

    • New York Stock Exchange organized.

    • Coins are minted by the government as enacted by the Coinage Act.

  • 1793

  • 1794

    • Whiskey Rebellion over excise tax in western Pennsylvania. Federal troops called to suppress the armed rebellion.

  • 1795

    • The Jay Treaty ratified. British troops required to withdraw from the U.S.

    • Pinckney's Treaty with Spain opened navigation on Mississippi River.

    • Washington posed for Stuart's portrait, which is now on the one dollar bill.

  • 1796

Internet Biographies:

George Washington -- from The Presidents of the United States of America

Compiled by the White House.

George Washington -- from Table of Presidents and Vice Presidents of the United States - MSN Encarta

Grolier Online has created this resource from its collection of print articles in Encyclopedia Americana. Contains a full biography, written by Curtis P. Nettels of Cornell University, along with suggestions for further reading.

George Washington -- from The American President

From the Miller Center of Public Affairs at the University of Virginia, in addition to information on the Presidents themselves, they have first lady and cabinet member biographies, listings of presidential staff and advisers, and timelines detailing significant events in the lives of each administration.

The Apotheosis of George Washington -- by Laura Dove, Lisa Guernsey, Scott Atkins and Adriana Rissetto

Very interesting examination of George Washington's elevation to divine status through history.

A Biography of George Washington 1732-1799 -- from From Revolution to Reconstruction

Text copied from National Archives and Records Administration The Founding Fathers' Page as part of a larger hypertext on American history.

George Washington -- from the Mount Vernon Ladies Association

This detailed biography is designed as a teaching aide for students and teachers. The site contains a lesson plan, reading materials, background notes and suggested classroom activities.

George Washington -- from Politics & Political Campaigns

Encyclopedic entry that is very well presented and organized.

George Washington -- from Supercomputing '94

Tourist information for the 1994 Conference on High Performance Computing & Communications included this biography. Included is a list of some historically significant print biographies on Washington and Washington's own writings.

The Life of George Washington -- by David Ramsay

Published eight years after Washington's death, this volume covers Washington's life in thirteen chapters (only nine online so far). D.E. Vitale is the archivist in charge of this project.

The Surprising George Washington -- from the National Archives and Records Administration

Richard Norton Smith's article from the Quarterly of the National Archives (Spring 1994, vol. 26, no. 1) examines Washington's characteristics and his treatment as a historical figure. More than a typical biography. Also includes links to some images.

George Washington on the Frontier -- from The Fort Edwards Foundation

Biography covering Col. Washington's time at Fort Edwards (1748-1758). Includes text of Washington's account of the Battle of Fort Necessity.

Historical Documents:

Papers of George Washington

This resource, collected by the University of Virginia and the Mount Vernon Ladies Association, contains historical context to some of the documents and letters written by Washington. Unfortunately, most of the text of these documents are not online.

Letter from Washington to John Hancock (1776)
First Inaugural Address (1789)
Second Inaugural Address (1793)
The Proclamation of Neutrality (1793)
Farewell Address (1796)

Other Internet Resources:

John Hanson, First President

Who was John Hanson and why is he the first president of the United States? Written by George Grant and excerpted from The Patriot's Handbook.

George Washington Memorial Parkway

This parkway preserves the scenery along the Potomac River, from Mount Vernon, through the nation's capital, to Great Falls on the Potomac. From the National Parks Service.

Moland House

"The Moland House - George Washington's headquarters on August 10, 1777, where the Marquis de Lafayette joined the American Revolution, the American Flag was said to have first flown over American troops here, and several other historic generals joined the American Revolution." Located in Warwick Township, Pennsylvania, the history and fight for preservation of this site are explained.

Mount Rushmore

Located in the Black Hills of South Dakota, the faces of Washington, tiny U.S. flag Jefferson, tiny U.S. flag Lincoln and tiny U.S. flag Teddy Roosevelt stand 60 feet tall.

Mount Vernon

A complete guide to Washington's Virginia plantation.

Sulgrave Manor

The Sulgrave, England ancestral home of the Washington family. Family history and tour information available.

Valley Forge

The story of the revolutionary war encampment written by Joan Marshall-Dutcher, Historian (retired).

Washington Monument

Quick facts, history and a tour of this landmark from the National Park Service.

Washington's Birthplace

Tourist information about this 538 acre National Park can be found from the National Park Service.

Points of Interest:

  • Believing that shaking hands was beneath a president, Washington bowed to his visitors.

  • Washington has the distinction of being the only president to be elected unanimously by the electoral college.

  • Washington had one remaining tooth at the time of his inauguration. During his lifetime he wore dentures made of human (some his own), cow, or hippopotamus teeth, ivory, or lead, but he never wore wooden teeth.

  • Many places are named after Washington including the nation's capital, the state, 31 counties and 17 communities.

  • The six white horses in Washington's stables had their teeth brushed every morning on Washington's orders.

  • The nation's capital was located in Philadelphia during Washington's administration making him the only president who didn't live in Washington, D.C. during his presidency.




George Washington

1st President of the United States
(April 30, 1789 to March 3, 1797)


Martha Washington