George Washington (1732-1799), First President of the USA
Sitter in 20 portraits
Born in Virginia, the first son of a planter, Washington had formal education lasting only a few years. Despite this, he managed to teach himself skills through reading books and watching others. He learned planting and land surveying and in 1759 married Martha Dandridge Custis, a widow with large land holdings and numerous slaves. While still young he devoted his time to being a soldier and politician. He was Commander-in-Chief of the American forces during the War of Independence and in 1789 became the first President of the United States.
by James Stephenson, after J.F. Renault
line and stipple engraving, circa 1860