George Washington

This is from “tolandpublications”, and it was published on the groaners listserv.

Many historians are unaware of a little-known aspect of American history involving George Washington. The Father of our Country became an almost apocryphal figure, and people know a lot of the stories and myths surrounding George Washington. We remember the story of his supposedly throwing a silver dollar across the Potomac River. (Of course, money went a lot farther in those days.) We remember other stories about young George’s penchant for telling the truth.

But few people or even historians know the story of another incident in George’s youth that helped cement his reputation for honesty. George’s father was more than a planter in Colonial Virginia. He was also a collector of colonial artifacts. He was particularly famous for his collection of wooden Indians. In fact, his collection was famous in the Colonies.

Young George, intent on sharpening his skills with the hatchet, went into the large room where his father kept his collection valuable, hand-carved Indian figures and proceeded to cut them to pieces.

When George’s father saw the damage that George had hewn with his ax, he confronted him. “George,” his father asked, “Are you responsible for this?”

“I cannot tell a lie, father,” George answered, . . . “I cut down your Cherokees.”

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