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October 2004

The Writings of George Washington from the Original Manuscript Sources: 1745-1799
Thousands of transcribed Washington papers; a research treasure-trove.
Grade Level: 9-12

The Electronic Text Center at the University of Virginia Library presents this collection of the works of the United States' first President, George Washington.
The site is well organized and easy to navigate. The thirty-seven volumes are indexed on the main page and a search tool is available. Each volume opens to a table of contents and users must use the browser's Back button to return to the main index.

U.S. History teachers or history buffs will find this site worthy of note. Visitors will want to begin by reading the preface that discusses the importance of the papers and other attempts to preserve them. Visitors can view Washington's school exercises in geometry from 1745, his speech to the Indians at Logstown in 1753 asking that they act as guides for his journey to the French Commandant, and the 1777 recruiting instructions for enlisting soldiers for the United States Army just to name a few. The recruiting instructions include incentives such as "bounty of twenty dollars" and a suit of clothes. Additionally, at the end of the war soldiers would be entitled to one hundred acres of land. The entire collection of more than 17,400 letters and documents can be browsed through the thirty-seven volumes or is fully searchable by word, phrase, date or recipient.


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