Cynthia Crofoot Rignanese, Esquire
Thinking Globally, Practicing Locally in Central Florida Since 1990

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George The Man (Yes, George Washington, Our Founding Father)

I am an avid student of US Constitutional and FOUNDING FATHERS history. I believe the Founding Fathers had vision beyond their time! 

Since my blog on Founding Father, Thomas Jefferson, was so popular, I thought it appropriate to focus this blog on the United States’ Founding Father, George Washington. 

Every school child around the world knows that George Washington was not only one of our Founding Fathers, but also an American Statesman, a military leader and the First President of the United States of America from 1789 to 1797.

While hundreds of books and many more scholarly articles have been written about this famous American, there are some more personal, interesting stories about him that are less publicized. I will focus this blog on those items. 

What’s In A Name (or NOT)?

For instance, did you know that in Washington’s time, it was not common to have a middle name! Of the first 20 United States presidents, only 5 had middle names.    

To Throw or Not To Throw? Did he throw a Silver Dollar across the Potomac?

This myth is frequently told to demonstrate Washington’s considerable physical strength.

The Potomac River is over a mile wide at Mount Vernon and even George Washington did not have the arm to fling a silver dollar that far. Moreover, there were no silver dollars when Washington was a young man. His step-grandson reported that Washington once threw a piece of slate across the Rappahannock River in Fredericksburg, which is much narrower, and that may be the origin of this story.

What Were Those Chompers Made of?

One of the most enduring myths about George Washington is that his dentures were made of wood. It’s quite possible that some of his dentures, particularly after they had been stained, took on a wooden complexion, but wood was never used in the construction of any of his dental fittings.

Throughout his life Washington employed numerous full and partial dentures that were constructed of materials including human, and probably cow and horse teeth, ivory (possibly elephant), lead-tin alloy, copper alloy (possibly brass), and silver alloy.

Red or White?

Even though wigs were fashionable, George Washington kept his own hair. He kept his hair long and tied back in a queue, or ponytail.

Although he didn't wear a wig, George Washington did powder his hair, giving it the iconic white color seen in famous portraits. Powdering ones hair was another custom of the time. 

As a young man, George Washington was actually a redhead!

Final Rest Where? 

It is a common misconception that George Washington is buried in a crypt beneath the U.S. Capitol

In his will, George Washington outlined his desire to be buried at home at Mount Vernon along with his wife and the rest of the Washington family. His final resting place is in a tomb overlooking the Potomac River at his beloved estate.

However, the Crypt at the U.S. Capitol building was at one time intended to be the burial place of the first president.

Source: Mt. Vernon Org

Ms. Rignanese is the Founding Member and Managing Partner of Rignanese & Associates; she has been practicing law in Winter Haven, Central Florida since 1991. Her practice focuses in estate planning, business, corporate and real property law. In her free time, she is an avid reader and self-educated historian with particular interest in the Founding Fathers and Constitutional Law.

Rignanese & Associates is available to work with clients on their individual legal matters. Please reach out to us at our new headquarters at 203 Avenue A, NW, Suite, 101, Winter Haven, Florida 33881 at 863.294.1114.

© Cynthia Crofoot Rignanese, Esquire    

Cynthia Rignanese