Friday, April 11, 2014

Farmer Washington

The following is an excerpt from my new book 8 Attributes of Great Achievers, Volume 2

“I was but the humble agent of favoring Heaven. . . . My first wish is . . . to see the whole world in peace, and the inhabitants of it as one band of brothers, striving who should contribute most to the happiness of mankind.”
-George Washington

“Time after time [Washington] gave up the comfortable security of his personal life in order to serve his country. On three separate occasions he retired from public life, fully expecting to live out his days in the quiet of his plantation. And on three separate occasions he answered the call to return the service of his country sacrificing his own desires for the peace and safety of America.”1

After his eight years of service as the first president of the United States, he returned to his life as a farmer. His granddaughter Nelly Custis wrote of his return to the farm, “Grandpa is very well and much pleased with being once more Farmer Washington.”2 When a person came to the farm looking for General Washington, his grandson Parke Custis gave these directions, “You will meet, sir, with an old gentleman, riding alone, in plain drab clothes, a broad-brimmed white hat, a hickory switch in his hand, and carrying an umbrella with a long staff, which is attached to his saddlebow: that person, sir, is General Washington.”3

Abigail Adams, wife of John Adams, wrote of Washington, “No man ever lived, more deservedly beloved and respected. . . . [He] maintained a modest diffidence of his own talents. . . . Possesst of power, possesst of an extensive influence, he never used it but for the benefit of his Country.”4

Long live the memory of George Washington, the great servant leader!

Learn more at

1. Jay A. Parry and Andrew M. Allison, The Real George Washington (National Center for Constitutional Studies, 1991), 605.
2. Stanislaus Vincent Henkels, An Extraordinary Collection of Washington's Letters, Washington Relics, Revolutionary Documents and the Rarest Works on American History (Times Printing House, 1891), 5.
3. Horatio Hastings Weld, Pictorial Life of George Washington (Philadelphia: Lindsay and Blakiston, 1846), 182.
4. Michael and Jana Novak, Washington’s God (New York: Basic Books, 2006), 4-5.