In honor of President’s Day 2015, I wanted to pay a special debt of gratitude to General George Washington. Today marks the official birthdate of our first American President and I wanted to recognize a few key events of Washington’s life that you might not have been aware of.
FIRST AND FOREMOST, TODAY IS NOT GEORGE WASHINGTON’S BIRTHDAY!
This was a huge surprise to me as I had always assumed that this was the day of Washington’s birth. I cannot say why, I guess I just accepted the fact that it was common knowledge. Quite the contrary! After doing some digging of my own I discovered several sources that show that George Washington’s birthday is on February 22.
Washington’s Birthday was first celebrated as a holiday in the District of Columbia in 1880. It was made a federal holiday in 1885. The holiday was originally held on the anniversary of George Washington’s birth, on February 22. In 1971, this holiday was moved to the third Monday in February.
I also found the following statistics to be quite interesting:
- Washington is known as the best American politician EVER!
- The are at least 4 American universities that carry Washington’s namesake
- President Nixon is frequently identified as the party responsible for changing Washington’s Birthday into President’s Day and fostering the notion that it is a day for commemorating all U.S. Presidents
In keeping with the theme of my blog, I wanted to point out the adversity that Washington faced and overcame during his life: (statistics courtesy of Tiller Leadership🙂
- Any list of history’s greatest motivators would have to include George Washington. He accomplished what seemed impossible. He took a disorganized, untrained, largely unmotivated army – many of whom were not sure that independence from England was worth fighting for – and transformed them into a team that defeated the mightiest military force on earth.
- George Washington was a motivational leader because he aspired to the ideal of heroism and achieved it.
- His greatness lay in his character, especially his moral character. He was a man of virtue because he strove to be one.
- He faced fear head-on.
- One of Washington’s greatest qualities for motivational leadership was that he never gave up. He was steadfast. Again and again he found himself in situations that seemed hopeless, but he always kept going.
- George Washington was a sacrificial leader. He was a true public servant. He served his country, and let his own destiny take care of itself.
- People knew he was a man of integrity who would always lead with the highest of standards. This is the kind of leader that people want to follow.
So, today may not officially be George Washington’s birthday but it is most certainly a day that he should be honored for his selfless service to the greatest country in the world! Thank you George…