100 Interesting Facts about US Presidents – Part 1

1George Washington

George Washington feared the growing influence of political parties in the US. He thought that it would lead to "the alternate domination" of each party, taking revenge on each other in the form of reactionary political policies and that it would eventually cause the North and South to split.

2. The current Queen of England is related by blood to U.S. President George Washington. Their last common ancestor died in 1681.

3. George Washington inoculated his troops against smallpox, reducing a 17% death rate from the disease down to 1%.

4. George Washington's mother was alive to see George Washington win the Revolutionary War and see him become the nation's first president. She was consistently dissatisfied with her son and even petitioned Virginia for a pension because of claimed neglect. She was also rumored to be a loyalist.

5. The man standing behind George Washington and holding the American flag in the famous painting "Washington Crossing the Delaware" is the 18-year-old officer and future president James Monroe.

6Slavery

When George Washington moved to Philadelphia to serve as president, he rotated his slaves in and out of Pennsylvania in order to circumvent a law that freed slaves being held in the state for longer than 6 continuous months. The rotation itself was illegal, but no one opposed him.

7. Thomas Jefferson allegedly hired a journalist to publish that John Adams was “a hideous hermaphroditical character which has neither the force and firmness of a man, not the gentleness and sensibility of a woman.”

8. Thomas Jefferson proposed a decimal system of measurements for the US before the metric system was created in France.

9. George Washington died when his doctors tried to cure his epiglottitis (i.e. inflamed throat) with blood letting. He lost more than half his blood before they stopped the treatment, and died just hours later.

10. The bar tab of a 1787 farewell party for George Washington is still intact. “According to the bill… [The Founding Fathers] drank 54 bottles of Madeira, 60 bottles of claret, 8 of whiskey, 22 of Porter, 8 of hard cider, 12 of beer, and 7 bowls of alcoholic punch”. The party had 55 attendees.

11Dolley Madison

According to the memoir of a former slave, First Lady Dolley Madison did not save the Lansdowne portrait of George Washington from the British burning it during the War of 1812. Rather, a Frenchman and a gardener saved it, while Dolley just ran off with silver.

12. George Washington was not in favor of political parties claiming in his farewell address that it would lead to "inter-political conflict, divide the nation, and give rise to cases of tyranny."

13. George Washington was worth $525 million in his day (adjusted for inflation).

14. Zack Snyder recently said he would like to do a film about George Washington in the style of '300'. Possibly unbeknownst to him, Robot Chicken made that exact joke in 2009 in a short bit. “1776. It ain’t accurate, but it will blow your f***ing mind!”

15. When George Washington first ran for the Virginia House of Burgesses, he supplied 164 gallons of alcohol to only 396 voters so they would like him. Washington won.

161792 Presidential election

In the 2nd U.S. Presidential election, both major parties, the Federalists, and Democratic-Republicans nominated George Washington as their candidate.

17. George Washington did not wear a powdered wig. He actually grew out his own hair and powdered it so it would appear white.

18. The British tried to surrender to the French at the end of the American Revolution. French General Rochambeau refused British Brigadier General O'Hara's sword and instead pointed him towards George Washington to offer surrender.

19. When George Washington passed away in 1799, Napoleon Bonaparte personally gave a eulogy and ordered a ten-day requiem. In Great Britain, the entire Royal Navy lowered its flags at half mast.

20. After having his hat shot from his head, bullets tear through his coat, and two horses shot from under him George Washington was able to ride 40 miles through the darkness to summon reinforcements while suffering from a severe case of dysentery.

21Samuel Adams

George Washington and Samuel Adams, both considered to be leaders of the American Revolution, refused to join a political party because they believed the idea would divide Congress. They're instead only identified as Whigs, a common name for those supporting independence.

22. George Washington stopped the Revolutionary War to return a lost dog to the enemy. The terrier of a British general was found wandering the battlefield. The US waved a truce flag, and both sides stopped shooting until the dog was successfully returned to the British commander.

23. Due to American Public Law 94-479, by the 94th Congress, George Washington is protected from being outranked by any officer in past, present, and future so if there’s a 6-star general, Washington is automatically upgraded to 7.

24. George Washington warned the American Public of four things in his Farewell Address: Sectionalism, Political Factions, National Debt and Foreign Influence.

25. George Washington's infamous wooden teeth were actually human teeth from slaves.

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