Part 1: 1450-1750
<---Part 2: 1750-1805
Part 3: 1791-1831
Part 4: 1831-1865

Narrative | Resource Bank | Teacher's Guide

Modern Voices
John Riley on Washington's position in 18th century Virginia
Resource Bank Contents

Q: Tell me about George Washington's position in 18th century Virginia and how that affected his view of himself?
John Riley

A: He's a third son. So he gets the third best of everything: the third best tract of land, the third best, you know, all in terms of personal property, when his father dies.

The Washingtons are not the top tier of society in Washington's day. In addition to that, he's sort of getting good property but not great property. So he knows very early on, as a teenager, that he's got to make it on his own. He knows what he has to do.
John Riley
Mount Vernon Historian

previous | next

Part 2: Narrative | Resource Bank Contents | Teacher's Guide

Africans in America: Home | Resource Bank Index | Search | Shop

WGBH | PBS Online | ©