[Of those opposed to slavery,] George Washington belonged, with Mason and Jefferson, in the hardest category — disapproving owners. Theirs was the most difficult position to maintain, psychologically and rhetorically. It would not be maintained over the next sixty years, as southern antislavery rhetoric withered. Practically and politically, disapproving owners were in the hardest position from which to achieve their goals. How do you weaken an institution in which you and all your neighbors are enmeshed? Washington did enough, finally, to free his own slaves, which was more than many owners in his position did. Jefferson never freed all his, nor did any of the other slave-owning presidents.
Steuben, Baron von
Philadelphia, PA — Founded in 1743 by Benjamin Franklin and John Bartram to promote
Useful Knowledge.Philosophical Hall (1789) is now a museum featuring art, scientific instruments, rare books, original manuscripts, natural history specimens, and curiosities.
Washington, DC — Dedicated to Lafayette in 1824; at each corner is a statue of one foreign general who served in the war.
River Edge, NJ — Presented to Baron von Steuben, Inspector General, in 1783 by the state of New Jersey for his services during the war; includes fine collection of period furnishings.
Remsen, NY — Includes a replica cabin, which contains period pieces, five wooded acres, and the monument which marks Baron von Steuben’s burial spot.
Valley Forge, VA — This federal-style mansion, built about 1740 and enlarged in 1798, served as headquarters for the Continental Army during the Battle of Germantown in 1777; includes period furniture and artifacts on 3.5 acres.
Founding Father: Rediscovering George Washington (1996)