George Washington was the commanding general and commander-in-chief of the colonial armies during the American Revolution. After the successful revolution to gain its freedom from Britain, George Washington would become the first President of the United States. He would serve in that capacity from 1789 to 1797.
Washington’s Early Life
George Washington was born on February 22, 1732, in Westmoreland County, Virginia. It was not until I started doing the research for this paper that I found there is actually very little known about Washington’s childhood. Due to that fact biographers had to fill in the gaps that existed. Among the fables my favorites are Washington skipped a silver dollar across the Potomac River, and after chopping down his father's prize cherry tree, he openly confessed to his misdeed after all he shall not tell a lie (Washington, 2013). From some of the writings from that era, it is known that Washington was home schooled. Later on he studied under a schoolmaster in math, geography, Latin and the English Literature. However it was the knowledge he obtained from backwoodsman, and the plantation foreman made him a master at growing tobacco, stock raising and surveying land by the time he was a teenager (Washington, 2013).
George Washington’s military career began on October 31, 1753. The Lieutenant Governor of Virginia Robert Dinwiddie sent Washington to Fort LeBoeuf, to tell the French to remove themselves from land claimed by Britain. The French politely refused and Washington made a hasty ride back to Williamsburg, Virginia the Capitol of the Virginia Colony. Dinwiddie sent Washington back with troops and they set up a post at Great Meadows. Washington's small force attacked a French post at Fort Duquesne killing the commander, Coulon de Jumonville, and nine others and taking the rest prisoners. This engagement was Washington’s first battlefield experience, and with it the French and Indian War had begun (ushistory.org, 2013).
Even though Washington’s attack on the French was successful, so was the French counterattack. Washington was captured by the French and released back to Williamsburg after concessions were made that no Fort would be built along the Ohio River (ushistory.org).While his military career got off to a rocky start, his successful leadership during the Revolution made him a legend.
Presidency and Historical Legacy
After the Revolution was over George Washington retired from military service with the idea of living out his retirement as a farmer on Mt Vernon. However, this was not to be his fate (Washington, 2013). George Washington was called to lead his country in the most important transitionary periods in American history, and this time it would be during a period of peace.
Washington was elected with 100 percent of Electoral College votes. That has not happened since then (ushistory.org, 2013) Washington was very aware that his presidency would set a precedent for all that would...