George Washington and the Rules of Civility

Presidential History Blog

If you visit any George Washington-related national site, the gift shop usually includes a slim volume of George Washington’s Rules of Civility.

The Processes of 18th Century Education

young GW George Washington always maintained the utmost dignity and civil behavior.

When George Washington was born in 1732, schools as we know them, were rare. If they received “education” at all, little children received the basics at their mother’s knee. They learned their letters and numbers. They learned Bible stories and Aesop’s fables, both of which provided “moral” education. They learned to read and write. Little boys learned to use tools or other instruments for a trade or property management. Little girls learned to sew and cook and housewifery skills.

Later, if a family could afford it, a tutor might be engaged, or perhaps co-engaged with neighbors. If a family was wealthy or intellectually inclined, a little boy might be sent to board…

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