Way back in the day, 1732 to be exact, the man who would later become the first president of the United States was born. But what was his childhood like? Where did he grow up? Was he privileged in a way that others weren’t that helped him become such a great leader?
There is very little known on the childhood of George Washington, as well as conflicting stories about it. But it is known that George Washington’s father was a wealthy farmer who had many plantations. George had seven brothers and sisters, which at the time seemed pretty normal. George and his family moved around a lot while George was little, and at only eleven years old George’s father passed away. George, however, did not inherit his father’s wealth after his passing (1). Instead, the oldest son in the family received most of his father’s inheritance and their mother received the rest in order to take care of herself as well as the rest of the children. Shortly after his father’s passing, George went to live with his eldest brother, Lawrence, where he remained for the rest of his childhood in hopes of growing up with somewhat of a father figure (1).
George, along with his siblings, were homeschooled. George’s mother claims that she had plans to send him overseas to further his education, but after their father’s passing he finished his schooling in the colonies. In order to fill in the gap of what he might be lacking in a better education, George closely studied and even imitated the Virginia elite (sourse). It seems as if George’s motto was ‘fake it till you make it’. It also helped that George’s brother/father figure, Lawrence, was worldly and showed George some of his ways in riding, fencing, hunting, and dancing (course). This helped him to gain skills and knowledge that would later help him become the leader we know him to be.
(1) George Washington’s Childhood Stories. (n.d.). Retrieved September 9, 2018, from http://www.pages.drexel.edu/~cjd327/childhood.html
(2) Education. (n.d.). Retrieved September 9, 2018, from https://www.mountvernon.org/library/digitalhistory/digital-encyclopedia/article/education/