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George Washington & Presidents Day

Is George Washington most famous American of all time? Let’s take a look at Washington the action hero! Born February 22, 1732 (George Washington was born in Virginia on February 11, 1731, according to the then-used Julian calendar). In 1752, however, Britain and all its colonies adopted the Gregorian calendar which moved Washington's birthday a year and 11 days to February 22, 1732. Americans celebrated Washington's Birthday long before Congress declared it a federal holiday. The centennial of his birth prompted festivities nationally and Congress established a Joint Committee to arrange for the occasion.

At the recommendation of the Committee, chaired by Henry Clay of the Senate and Philemon Thomas of the House, Congress adjourned on February 22, 1832 out of respect for Washington's memory and in commemoration of his birth.

Prompted by a memorial from the mayor and other citizens of Philadelphia, the House and Senate commemorated the 130th Anniversary of Washington's birth by reading aloud his Farewell Address. Why don’t we celebrate on this birthday? Uniform Federal Holidays Act of 1971, its observance can occur from February 15 to 21st. One of the provisions of this act changed the observance of Washington's Birthday from February 22nd to the third Monday in February. Ironically, this guaranteed that the holiday would never be celebrated on Washington's actual birthday, as the third Monday in February cannot fall any later than February 21.

On the dollar bill (printed 19mil times per day); Gilbert Stewart painting 1796 when he was 64, and almost 50 years of service to his Country (“unfinished painting of George Washington). Seems elusive to many, look at the Washington monument (huge slab of stone) versus the Jefferson and Lincoln memorial.

- Commander in Chief of Continental Army for 8 years.

o “Head of State”

o Wanted to go back to his farm and family

- President of 1787 Convention.

- 1st President for 8 years

At age 22 in 1754, had first conflict, like a colonial Luke Skywalker, went to hold a plot of land against the French. An ambushed assumed, was short and bloody, and Washington was victorious. Afterwards he wrote a letter to his brother and said, “ I heard the bullets whistle, and believe me, there was something charming in the sound”. Sparked off the 7 year “French and Indian War”. British statesman Horace Walpole later said, “It was a volley fired by a young Virginian in the backwoods that set the world on fire.”

1755 (Battle of Monogahela), he is an aid to the Commander in Chief of the British army in America; General Edward Braddock. Braddock was sent specifically to defend the Ohio country, and he planned to attack Fort Duquesne (pr. Du-Kain), or what is now Pittsburg Pennsylvania. Washington advised to travel lightly in the terrain. July 1755, 1,300 British and Militia marching and were very tired. July 9th, French spotted, and confusion set in and Indians and French were slaughtering them. Many British were running and dying. In this circumstance, Washington jumped on his horse and rode back and forth for hours, got them re-organized and got them situated. He had two horses shot out from under him, and had holes in his had and uniform (4 bullets had struck clothes). ½ of British had fallen, and would have been more without Washington. Braddock was shot in a lung, and ordered Washington to go 40miles to get another leader. This is where the ”legend” of Washington was born. Indominable courage in threat of death.

- “Providence has preserved him”.

Years later a chief from this battle saw him, and told Washington that he had ordered his men to shoot him, but could not hit him. Chief told Washington, “He will become the chief of nations, and people not yet born would hail him as the chief of a mighty empire”. Told him this only a few years prior to the American Revolution.

- Book to read: “Washing: A Life” by Ron Chernow

December 25th, 1776 – Hessian’s at Trenton

o “Victory or Death” was the password for the mission.

“American Crisis” – Thomas Paine “THESE are the times that try men's souls. The summer soldier and the sunshine patriot will, in this crisis, shrink from the service of their country; but he that stands by it now, deserves the love and thanks of man and woman.

Fredrick the Great – “The achievements of Washington and his little band of compatriots from the 25th of December to the 4th of January, were the most brilliant of any recorded in the annals of military achievements.”

We heard 0 Bills in the House today – Day off for Presidents Day

- 10 NEW numbered bills

- 10 NEW requested bills

Total Bill Count

- House 351

- Senate 148

- House Concurrent Resolutions (HCR) 16

- House Joint Resolution (HJR) 16

- House Resolutions (HR) 3

- Senate Concurrent Resolutions (SCR) 7

- Senate Joint Resolutions (SJR) 11

- Senate Resolutions (SR) 1

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