The House that George Lived In

In July, during the time when it was hellacious hot and I forgot to blog, I went with the Husband to Mount Vernon, which was George Washington’s home. Mount Vernon is right on the Potomac River and is a large plantation style place. HH and I rode on a boat from Alexandria to Mount Vernon, which was really enjoyable. We toured the house and grounds and got to see a few neat demonstrations.

View from the Bowling Green

The Front

The back, which faces the Potomac River. 

“Mount Vernon was home to George Washington for more than 45 years. First known as Little Hunting Creek Plantation, the Estate was originally granted to Washington’s great grandfather John Washington in 1674.  George Washington inherited the property upon the death of his brother Lawrence’s widow in 1761.

  Over the years, Washington enlarged the residence and built up the property from 2,000 to nearly 8,000 acres. He divided the acreage into five working farms, including the Mansion House Farm, where he lived with his family. At the Mansion House Farm, Washington sought to create a landscape combining beauty and functionality in a serenely harmonious setting.
  When Washington inherited the estate, the farmhouse that we now call “the Mansion” consisted of four rooms and a central passage on the first floor and three bedrooms on the second. The process of enlarging and improving the house began in the years before Washington’s marriage in 1759, when he raised the structure from one-and-a-half  to two-and-a-half stories and extensively redecorated the interior. The north and south wings of the house were begun just before the start of the Revolutionary War. The very last room, the Large Dining Room, was completed after the war’s end.

  In the meantime, Washington also transformed the Mansion’s modest frame exterior, using a process called “rustication.” This meant replacing the original plain wooden siding with bevel-edged pine blocks that had been coated with a mixture of paint and sand to give the appearance of stone.
Further, Washington added a stunning two-story porch, or “piazza,” overlooking the Potomac.  Here family and guests would gather in warm weather to enjoy the breeze off the river.

View from the house, looking out over the Potomac River

  In designing his estate, Washington organized the outbuildings, lanes, and gardens in a way that reflects both the practical and aesthetic sides of his nature. From the north to the south are situated the outbuildings, or “dependencies,” where the work of the plantation took place. Along the east-west axis are the gardens and pleasure grounds. The work area, although located very near the Mansion, was designed so it would not intrude upon the property’s scenic beauty.
Today the Mansion has been restored to its appearance in 1799, the last year of Washington’s life.” (From: The Mount Vernon Website )

While we toured the grounds, we got to see a demonstration by calverymen and by infantrymen.

Calvery dudes showing off their skills.

Infantry men showing off their skills.

Firing demonstration! See below for the video.
George and Martha Washington’s Resting place

 Also, it was really neat to see the graves of George and Martha Washington; they’re buried on the plantation.

Front of the tomb

The tomb, with the hordes of other people.

They still keep farm life there, as well as grow gardens, and you can tour other parts of the plantation such as the slave houses and functioning hay barn.

Hay barn! They make bread there.

Some of the crops they grow, and some sheep.

It was really neat! I’m planning of visiting Jefferson’s plantation this month with my momma, so I’ll have more picture then. Please check out the videos below to see the cannon demonstrations they did while we were there!

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