Go deeper into the history of each park with scholarly articles and essays from Oxford University Press, freely available for the centennial year.

American National Biography

George Washington

US Presidents

George Washington was the first President of the United States. Upon his death in December 1799, Jefferson wrote, "His was the singular destiny and merit of leading the armies of his country successfully through an arduous war for the establishment of its independence, of conducting its councils through the birth of a government, new in its forms and principles, until it settled down into a quiet and orderly train; and of scrupulously obeying the laws through the whole of his career, civil and military, of which the history of the world furnishes no other example." And as Henry Lee said in his celebrated eulogy before Congress, Washington had been "first in war, first in peace, and first in the hearts of his countrymen.

Learn More →

OUP Books

George Washington's Mount Vernon: At Home in Revolutionary America

Robert F. Dalzell, Jr. and Lee Baldwin Dalzell

This book brings together--for the first time--the details of Washington's 45-year campaign to build and perfect Mount Vernon. Here we meet the planter/patriot who also loved building, a man passionately committed to impressing the stamp of his character and personal beliefs on the physical world around him. Architecturally, as the authors show, Mount Vernon blends the orthodox and the innovative in surprising ways, just as the new American nation would. Equally interesting is the light their book sheds on the process of building at Mount Vernon, and on the people--enslaved and free--who did the work. Washington was a demanding master, and his workers often clashed with him. Yet, as the Dalzells argue, that experience played a vital role in shaping his hopes for the future of the nation--hopes that embraced the full promise of the American Revolution.

George Washington's Mount Vernon: At Home in Revolutionary America
Buy Book →