Friday, May 20, 2011

Baltimore/DC Trip: Mt. Vernon

After we visited Arlington National Cemetery we went to Mt. Vernon-Washington's estate-before heading back to North Carolina.  Unlike all the other attractions in the DC area this did cost, but it was only $15 a person and the grounds are so extensive that you could easily spend a whole day here!  We spent about 4-5 hours there and we could be stayed longer for sure!  We also learned so much from our whole trip to DC, especially Mt. Vernon!  :)
 Here's a view of Washington's house.  The wing on the left was some guest slave quarters and the wing on the right was the kitchen.
 Here's a view of some of the outbuildings.  This contained some of the slave quarters and also the greenhouse.  You can see some of his more formal gardens in the foreground.  It may sound bad that he had slaves, but it wasn't that way.  I mean, he had slaves, but he treated them well and gave them opportunities to start and run their own businesses.  And, in George Washington's will he emancipated all of his slaves.  So, see, he really was an incredible man in just about every way!  Oh, and his father died when George was only 10, ending his tutoring.  So, he went on to read books about everything, thus becoming a very well educated (and self educated) man!  Incredible huh?
 We got to tour the house, but were unable to take any photos inside.  Which is fine because I think I will forever have those images in my head anyway.  It was gorgeous and lived up to its reputation!  :)  Washington was very innovative and brilliant with so many things on his estates from his garden design, to farming practices, to the way he built this house and added on to it several times!  As you can see they are currently renovating part of the outside.
 Here's the other side of the house.  This is the side that faces the Potomac River.  :)
 A view from the back porch.
 Martha Washington.  (Well, an actress playing Martha....)  :)
 This is a pic of the 15 sided treading barn design that Washington came up with.  It housed horse and utilized them to separate wheat!  Just one example of his ingenuity!
 This was the old tomb of George Washington and his family.  It was too small, so a bigger (and better) one was built later according to the specs Washington left in his will.
 Here's the tomb where President Washington, his wife and other family members are actually buried.  I didn't want to take pictures of their actual marble caskets out of respect, but they were beautiful.
 A better pic of the Potomac that runs right by Mt. Vernon.  Isn't it huge, and pretty?
One last picture of the house.  I can't get enough.  Just too cool that it was General George Washington's house.  That he built.  Where he lived until his death.  What a great man.  A man of God, and a man who was the very first President of this wonderful country!  How thankful we are for this man, and so many others who founded this place on such noble things.

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