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CHAPTER cease; and to each of the other sons an estate of six or
seven hundred acres. The youngest daughter died when an infant, and for the only remaining one a suitable provision was made in the will. It is thus seen, that Augustine Washington, although suddenly cut off in the vigor of manhood, left all his children in a state of comparative independence. Confiding in the prudence of the mother, he directed that the proceeds of all the property of her children should be at her disposal, till they should respectively come of age.
This weighty charge of five young children, the eldest of whom was eleven years old, the superintendence of their education, and the management of complicated affairs, demanded no common share of resolution, resource of mind, and strength of character. In these important duties Mrs. Washington acquitted herself with great fidelity to her trust, and with entire success. Her good sense, assiduity, tenderness, and vigilance overcame every obstacle; and, as the richest reward of a mother's solicitude and toil, she had the happiness to see all her children come forward with a fair promise into life, filling the sphere allotted to them in a manner equally honorable to themselves, and to the parent who had been the only guide of their principles, conduct, and habits. She lived to witness the noble career of her eldest
son, till by his own rare merits he was raised to the head of a nation, and applauded and revered by the whole world. It has been said, that there never a great man, the elements of whose greatness might not be traced to the original characteristics or early influence of his moth
If this be true, how much do mankind owe to the mother of Washington.
Under the colonial governments, particularly in the southern provinces, the means of education were circumscribed. The thinness of population, and the broad line which separated the rich from the poor, prevented the establishment of schools on such a basis as would open the door of instruction to all classes, and thus prepare the way for higher seminaries of learning. Young men destined for the learned
State of education in the Colonies.
professions, whose parents could afford the expense, were occasionally sent to England. But the planters generally sought no other education for their sons, than such as would fit them to be practical men of business. In a few cases, this was derived from a private tutor ; in others, from a teacher of the common schools, whose qualifications would naturally be limited to the demands of his employers, and who was seldom competent to impart more than the simplest elements of knowledge. When he had inculcated the mysteries of reading, writing, arithmetic, and keeping accounts, his skill was exhausted, and the duties of his vocation were fulfilled. If his pupils aspired to higher attainments, they were compelled to leave their master behind, and find their way without a guide.
To a school of this description was George Washington Ilis early indebted for all the aids his mind received in its early dis- habils. cipline and culture. How far he profited by these slender advantages, or was distinguished for his application and love of study, can only be conjectured from the results. Tradition reports, that he was inquisitive, docile, and diligent; but it adds, that his military propensities and passion for active sports displayed themselves in his boyhood ; that he formed his schoolmates into companies, who paraded, marched, and fought mimic battles, in which he was always the commander of one of the parties. He had a fondness for the athletic amusements of running, jumping, wrestling, tossing bars, and other feats of agility and bodily exercise. Indeed it is well known, that these practices were continued by him after he had arrived at the age of mature life. It has also been said, that while at school his probity and demeanor were such, as to win the deference of the other boys, who were accustomed to make him the arbiter of their disputes, and never failed to be satisfied with his judgment. Such are some of the incidents of his juvenile years, remembered and related by his contemporaries after he had risen to greatness. There are not wanting evidences of his early proficiency His early
proficiency. in some branches of study. His manuscript schoolbooks,
Origin of the Washington Family. – John and Lawrence Washington emi.
grate to America. — Birth of George Washington. – His early Education. His Fondness for mathematical Studies and athletic Amusements, and his methodical Habits. – A Project formed for his entering the British Navy as a Midshipman. He becomes a practical Surveyor.– Engages in the Employment of Lord Fairfax. — Continues the Business of Surveying for three Years. — Appointed Adjutant of one of the Districts in Virginia. — Voyage to Barbadoes with his Brother.
Origin of the
The name of WASHINGTON, as applied to a family, is CHAPTER proved from authentic records to have been first known about the middle of the thirteenth century. There was. Washington previously a manor of that name in the County of Durham, in England, the proprietor of which, according to a custom not unusual in those days, took the name of his estate. From this gentleman, who was originally called William de Hertburn, have descended the branches of the Washington family, which have since spread themselves over various parts of Great Britain and America.
Few individuals of the family have attained to such eminence in the eye of the public, as to give perpetuity to the memory of their deeds or their character; yet, in the local histories of England, the name is frequently mentioned with respect, and as denoting persons of consideration, wealth, and influence. Among them were scholars, divines, and lawyers, well known to their contemporaries. Several received the honors of knighthood. Sir Henry Washington
CHAPTER is renowned for his bravery and address in sustaining the
siege of Worcester against the Parliamentary forces dur-
Washington ot' Sulgrave.
In the year 1538, the manor of Sulgrave, in Northamptonshire, was granted to Lawrence Washington, of Gray's Inn, and for some time Mayor of Northampton. He was probably born at Warton, in Lancashire, where his father lived. The grandson of this first proprietor of Sulgrave, who was of the same name, had many children, two of whom, that is, John and Lawrence Washington, being the second and fourth sons, emigrated to Virginia about the year 1657, and settled at Bridge's Creek, on the Potomac River, in the County of Westmoreland. The eldest brother, Sir William Washington, married a half-sister of George Villiers, Duke of Buckingham. Lawrence had been a student at Oxford. John had resided on an estate at South Cave in Yorkshire, which gave rise to an erroneous tradition among his descendants, that their ancestor came from the North of England. The two brothers bought lands in Virginia, and became successful planters.
John Washington, not long after coming to America, was employed in a military command against the Indians, and rose to the rank of Colonel. The parish in which he lived was also named after him. He married Anne Pope, by whom he had two sons, Lawrence and John, and a daughter. The elder son, Lawrence, married Mildred Warner, of Gloucester County, and had three children, John, Augustine, and Mildred.
Augustine Washington, the second son, was twice married. His first wife was Jane Butler, by whom he had three