The celebration of President’s Day brings to mind much more than the birthday of George Washington. When we think of history lessons involving Washington, wooden teeth, wigs, and the Revolutionary War, come to mind; more interesting however was his relationship with slavery.
Washington was born in Virginia on February 22, 1732, and supported abolition despite being a slave owner. During the Revolutionary War, Washington held rank as commander-in-chief of the Continental Army. He became president in 1789 until 1797. Throughout this time, he not only owned hundreds of slaves, but put paperwork in place to make sure they would remain in the family circle even after his passing.
Quite ironic is the fact that while Washington was fighting for America’s independence, hundreds of thousands of slaves in this country weren’t even considered full human beings.
Washington’s complicated relationship with slavery is one that reveals a lot of interesting facts.
Hit the gallery below for 10 examples.
Photos: Gilbert Stuart Painting, Wikipedia Commons