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American’s Four United Republics: Discovery-Based Curriculum

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Washington Quarter



Date of Issue
Designed By
John Flannagan
Designer's Initial
Date of Issue
Designed By
John Flannagan

8.33% Ni
Balance Cu

5.670 g
O.955 in.
24.26 mm
1.75 mm
No. of Reeds

Source: US Mint

US Mnit Error on Washington State Quarter.

The US Mint, in 1999, began to release a redesigned quarter under The 50 State Quarter Program. The US Mint’s website states:

The 50 State Quarters™ Program is 'changing' the 'state' of coin collecting. Approximately every 10 weeks, from 1999 to 2008, there will be a new state quarter to collect. Each quarter's reverse will celebrate one of the 50 states with a design honoring its unique history, traditions, and symbols. The quarters are released in the same order that the states joined the union.

On January 1, 1999 the United States Mint proudly unveiled its first George Washington State Quarter with the mark of Delaware on its reverse. This State's Quarter was release first because the US Mint recognized Delaware as the first state due to its ratification of the US Constitution on December 7, 1787. The US Mint is mistaken. Delaware actually joined the United States of America when it ratified the Articles of Confederation on 1 February 1779. Delaware was the 12th state to join the Union ten years before its ratification of the US Constitution.

It is important to understand that if the US Constitution was never ratified in 1788 the United States of America would have continued under the Articles of Confederation. Moreover, it is incongruous that the US Mint has served as the official government agency to perpetuate the Delaware First State Myth (the first state was actually Virginia - 16 December 1777). The US Mint’s third Director, Elias Boudinot, was the 4th President of the United States in Congress Assembled under the Articles of Confederation. One would think that a Government Institution once headed by a US President under the Articles would be more in tuned to the historical facts behind statehood. The correct order of US State ratification and entrance into the Union is as follows:

US Statehood Order
Articles of Confederation - 1 to 13 States
US Constitution - 37 to 50 States

State State Passes Reported to Delegates Sign
Ratification Congress
1 Virginia 16 December 1777 25 June 1778 9 July 1778
2 South Carolina 5 February 1778 25 June 1778 9 July 1778
3 New York 6 February 1778 23 June 1778 9 July 1778
4 Rhode Island 16 February 1778 23 June 1778 9 July 1778
5 Georgia 26 February 1778 25 June 1778 9 July 1778
6 Connecticut 27 February 1778 23 June 1778 9 July 1778
7 New Hampshire 4 March 1778 23 June 1778 9 Jul 1778 - 8 Aug 1778
8 Pennsylvania 5 March 1778 25 June 1778 9 Jul 1778 - 22 Jul 1778
9 Massachusetts 10 March 1778 23 June 1778 9 July 1778
10 North Carolina 24 April 1778 25 June 1778 21 July 1778
11 New Jersey 20 November 1778 25-26 Nov. 1778 26 Nov 1778
12 Delaware 1 February 1779 16 February 1779 22 Feb 1779 - 5 May 1779
13 Maryland 2 February 1781 12 February 1781 1 March 1781

Sources: The Documentary History of the Ratification of the Constitution: Vol. 1: Constitutional Documents and Records, 1776-1787, ed. Merrill Jensen, Madison, Wis.: State Historical Society of Wisconsin, 1976; Encyclopedia of American History: Bicentennial Edition, ed. Richard Morris, New York; Harper & Row, 1976; Documents of American History, ed. Henry Steele Commanger, Englewood Cliffs, NJ; Prentice-Hall, 1973

We have requested the US Mint correct this error and received the following response (Click Here) the blame it seems is the fault of Congress.



1999 Total Mint Production

. 10¢ 25¢ 50¢ $1
JAN 797,265,000 148,720,000 217,750,000 361,888,000 0 0
FEB 748,800,000 129,840,000 201,000,000 310,432,000 0 0
MAR 936,800,000 184,800,000 251,500,000 345,400,000 0 0
APR 1,013,600,000 182,640,000 294,000,000 284,200,000 0 0
MAY 1,092,800,000 196,320,000 292,500,000 267,600,000 0 0
JUN 1,033,200,000 197,760,000 370,500,000 291,400,000 0 0
JUL 944,400,000 213,840,000 358,000,000 365,164,000 0 0
AUG 996,400,000 226,176,000 318,340,000 357,496,000 324,000 5,180,000
SEP 940,800,000 202,320,000 324,000,000 395,528,000 0 8,540,000
OCT 1,070,800,000 203,184,000 285,160,000 457,640,000 0 15,260,000
NOV 1,028,800,000 190,080,000 358,500,000 495,800,000 7,300,000 12,092,000
DEC 994,000,000 203,040,000 290,500,000 482,592,000 11,958,000 6,596,000
TOTAL 11,597,665,000 2,278,720,000 3,561,750,000 4,415,140,000 19,582,000 47,668,000

Source: US Mint

George Washington - A Klos Family Project George Washington - A Klos Family Project - Scans Biography student publishing

George Washington
Commander in Chief of the Continental Army

11th US President
1st under the 1787 Constitution

For Information on the Ten Presidents before Washington -- Click Here

George Washington was commander in chief of the Continental army during the American Revolution and later became the first president of the United States serving from1789 until 1797. He symbolized qualities of discipline, aristocratic duty, military orthodoxy and persistence in adversity that his contemporaries valued as marked of mature political leadership.

Photos of the George Washington's Teeth from "George Washington: The Man Behind the Myths Exhibit" at the Heinz Pittsburgh Regional History Center - October 7, 2000 - photo1, photo2, and photo3 by: Katie, Upper St. Clair, Pennsylvania.

Born the eldest son of Augustine Washington and his second wife Mary Ball Washington, in Westmoreland County, Va., on Feb. 22, 1732, George spent his early years on the family estate on Pope's Creek along the Potomac River. Although Washington had little or no formal schooling, his early notebooks indicate that he read in geography, military history, agriculture, deportment and composition. He showed an aptitude for surveying and simple mathematics. An early ambition to go to sea had been discouraged by George's mother. His father died in 1743, and soon thereafter George went to live with his half brother Lawrence at Mount Vernon, Lawrence's plantation on the Potomac. Lawrence became something of a substitute father for his brother. Upon the death of Lawrence in 1752, George inherited the Mount Vernon estate.

Photo of the George Washington's Survey from "George Washington: The Man Behind the Myths Exhibit" at the Heinz Pittsburgh Regional History Center - October 7, 2000 - by: Zachary, Baker Elementary School, Upper St. Clair, Pennsylvania.

Washington played an important role in the struggles preceding the outbreak of the French and Indian War. He was chosen by Lieutenant Governor Robert Dinwiddie of Virginia to deliver an ultimatum calling on French forces to cease their encroachment in the Ohio River valley. Washington's diary account of the dangers and difficulties of his journey published on his return helped win him his ensuing promotion to lieutenant colonel. Although only 22 years of age and lacking experience, he was ordered to lead a militia force for the protection of workers who were building a fort at the Forks of the Ohio River.

"On the stormy night of May 27th, 1754, Washington and about 40 men began an all night march to confront the French and learn their intentions. They traveled through woods so dark the men sometimes spent nearly half and hour just trying to find the trail.

About dawn, Washington met with a friendly Seneca chief, Half King, and made plans to contact the French Camp. As the French commander had not posted sentries, Washington and his men easily surrounded the unsuspecting French.

A shot was fired, no one really knows by whom, and soon the peaceful glen was filled with the crash of musketry and the sulphurous smell of powder. The skirmish lasted about 15 minutes. When it was over, 10 Frenchmen were dead and 21 captured. One escaped and made his way back to Fort Duquesne at the forks of the Ohio. Washington's casualties were one man killed and two or three wounded.

Washington now knew he was discovered. He sent his prisoners to Williamsburg while he returned to the Great Meadows. There he started construction of a small fortification to protect from probable attack. About five weeks later the attack came. A larger force of French and Indians attacked Washington's force of 400 at his 'Fort of Necessity.'
" - - National Park Service. A successful French assault obliged him to accept articles of surrender and he departed with the remnants of his company.

Discouraged by defeat, Washington resigned his commission in 1754. In May, 1755, he began service as a volunteer and aide-de-camp to British General Edward Braddock. Braddock was mortally wounded and Washington narrowly escaped death. He escaped injury although four bullets ripped his coat and two horses were shot from under him Braddock's troops were ambushed by a band of French soldiers and their Indian allies on the Monongahela River. At age of 23, he was promoted to colonel and appointed commander in chief of the Virginia militia. His responsibility was to defend the frontier.

Washington left the army in 1758, assured that the Virginia frontier was safe from French attack. He returned to Mount Vernon, to restore his neglected estate. With the support of an ever-growing circle of influential friends, he entered politics, serving (1759-74) in Virginia's House of Burgesses. In January 1759 he married Martha Dandridge Custis, a wealthy and attractive young widow with two small children.

Alarmed by the repressive measures of the British crown and Parliament, Washington became a leader in Virginia's opposition to Great Britain's colonial policies. At first he hoped for reconciliation with Britain. In July, 1774 he presided over a meeting in Alexandria that adopted the Fairfax Resolves, calling for the establishment and enforcement of a stringent boycott on British imports prior to similar action by the First Continental Congress. As a delegate to the First and Second Continental Congress 1774 and 1775 Washington did not participate actively in the deliberations, however, his presence was undoubtedly a stabilizing influence. In June 1775 he was Congress's unanimous choice as commander in chief of the newly created Continental Army when fighting broke out between Massachusetts and the British.

Washington took command of the troops surrounding British-occupied Boston on July 3, devoting the next few months to training the undisciplined 14,000 man army and trying to secure urgently needed powder and other supplies. Early in March 1776, he took command of the makeshift force and moved his army to New York. Defeated there by the combined land and sea forces of General William Howe, he withdrew from Manhattan to establish a new defensive line north of New York City. In November he retreated across the Hudson River into New Jersey. In the last months of 1776, desperately short of men and supplies, Washington almost despaired. He had lost New York City to the British; enlistment was almost up for a number of the troops, and others were deserting in droves; civilian morale was falling rapidly; and Congress, faced with the possibility of a British attack on Philadelphia, had withdrawn from the city.

Colonial morale was briefly revived by the capture of Trenton, New Jersey, a brilliantly conceived attack in which Washington crossed the Delaware River on Christmas night 1776 and surprised the predominantly Hessian garrison. Advancing to Princeton, New Jersey, he routed the British thereon January 3, 1777. These two engagements restored patriot morale and by spring Washington had 8,000 new recruits. In September and October 1777 he suffered serious reverses in Pennsylvania at Brandywine and Germantown. The major success of that year, the defeat of the British at Saratoga, New York in October, belonged not to Washington but to Benedict Arnold and Horatio Gates. The contrast between Washington's record and Gates's brilliant victory was one factor that led to the some members of Congress and army officers to replace Washington with a more successful commander, probably Gates. Washington acted quickly, and the plan eventually collapsed due to lack of public support as well as to Washington's overall superiority to his rivals.

After holding his bedraggled and dispirited army together during the difficult winter at Valley Forge, Washington learned that France had recognized American independence. With the aid of the Prussian Baron von Steuben and the French Marquis de Lafayette, he concentrated on turning the army into a viable fighting force. By spring he was ready to take the field again.

In 1780 the main theater of the war shifted to the south. Although other generals conducted the campaigns in Virginia and the Carolinas, Washington was still responsible for the overall direction of the war. After the arrival of the French army in 1780 he concentrated on coordinating allied efforts and in 1781 launched the brilliantly planned and executed Yorktown Campaign against Charles Cornwallis, securing the American victory.

After the war Washington returned to Mount Vernon, which had once again declined in his absence. Although he became president of the Society of the Cincinnati, an organization of former Revolutionary War officers, he avoided involvement in Virginia politics, preferring to concentrate on restoring Mount Vernon. His diary notes a steady stream of visitors, native and foreign; Mount Vernon, like its owner, had already become a national institution.

Shays' Rebellion, an armed revolt in Massachusetts, 1786 through 1787, convinced many Americans of the need for a stronger government. Washington and other Virginia nationalists were instrumental in bringing about the Constitutional Convention of 1787 to promote that end. In May 1787, Washington headed the Virginia delegation to the Constitutional Convention in Philadelphia and was unanimously elected presiding officer. His presence lent prestige to the proceedings, and although he made few direct contributions, he generally supported the advocates of a strong central government. Washington's attendance at the Constitutional Convention and his support for ratification of the Constitution were critically important for its success in the state conventions. After the new Constitution became legally operative, he was unanimously elected president in 1789.

Standing on the balcony of Federal Hall on Wall Street in New York City, Washington took his oath of office as the first President of the United States on April 30, 1789. Washington acted carefully and deliberately, aware of the need to build an executive structure that could accommodate future presidents. Hoping to prevent sectionalism from dividing the new nation, he toured the New England states in 1789 and the South in 1791. By appointing Alexander Hamilton as Secretary of the Treasury and Thomas Jefferson Secretary of State, he brought the two ablest and most principled figures of the revolutionary generation into central positions of responsibility. An able administrator, he nevertheless failed to heal the widening breach between factions led by Secretary of State Thomas Jefferson and Secretary of the Treasury Alexander Hamilton. Because he supported many of Hamilton's controversial fiscal policies, the assumption of state debts, the Bank of the United States, and the excise tax, Washington became the target of attacks by Jeffersonian Democratic-Republicans.

Washington letter as President
Click image to enlarge
Courtesy of the Skibo Center

On August 30th George Washington writes to Samuel Huntington, Governor of Connecticut, transmitting two acts of Congress including the approval of the Treaty of Hamar and an order to begin a survey of Ohio. Washington writes in full:

New York August 30th 1789


I have the honor to transmit to your Excellency a Resolution of Congress for carrying into effect a Survey directed to be made by an Act of the late Congress -- and requesting the President of the United Sates to appoint a proper person to compleat[sic] the same. -- Also the duplicate of an Act relative to negotiations and Treaties with the Indian Tribes. –

I have the honor to be
With due consideration
Your Excellency's Most Obt.
and Most Humble Sevt.

Go: Washington

His Excellency
Samuel Huntington

For More on the Treaty of Hamar Click Here

Washington was reelected president in 1792, and the following year the most divisive crisis arising out of the personal and political conflicts within his cabinet occurred over the issue of American neutrality during the war between England and France. Washington, whose policy of neutrality angered the pro-French Jeffersonians, was horrified by the excesses of the French Revolution and enraged by the tactics of Edmond Genet, the French minister in the United States, which amounted to foreign interference in American politics. Further, with an eye toward developing closer commercial ties with the British, the president agreed with the Hamiltonians on the need for peace with Great Britain. His acceptance of the 1794 Jay's Treaty, which settled outstanding differences between the United States and Britain but which Democratic-Republicans viewed as an abject surrender to British demands, revived condemnation against the president, as did his vigorous upholding of the excise law during the Whiskey Rebellion in western Pennsylvania.

By March 1797, when Washington left office, the country's financial system was well established; the Indian threat east of the Mississippi had been largely eliminated; and Jay's Treaty and Pinckney's Treaty (1795) with Spain had enlarged U.S. territory and removed serious diplomatic difficulties. In spite of the animosities and conflicting opinions between Democratic-Republicans and members of the Hamiltonian Federalist party, the two groups were at least united in

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