Skip to comments."Bulletproof" George
Posted on 02/24/2007 3:19:23 PM PST by Liberty Wins
Misguided motives for politically correct education have cut a deadly swath through public school textbooks, resulting in less and less information about the Founders. The heroism and virtuous character of Washington, in particular, are seldom discussed.
Children start developing personal heroes at age five and six. Our kindergarten and first grade students study George Washington for most of the month of February, with gratifying results. Temporarily at least, we persuade them to give up Spiderman and Superman and adopt George as their role model and hero of the month. (Even though George didnt fly, he did have a cape.) They become familiar with his life and deeds and even develop some affection for him.
The core of our program is the presentation of the side of Washington that we call the "bulletproof" George Washington, after the title of a little book by David Barton.
At the beginning of the French and Indian War, the 23-year-old Washington took part in an astonishing but little-known battle that is rarely found in school texts.
In a brilliant ambush at Monongahela, the Indians brought down more than 700 British soldiers, including General Braddock, who was fatally wounded. Completely exposed to fire, the young George Washington rode fearlessly back and forth on the battlefield, delivering Braddock's orders to the troops.
Washington was the only officer on horseback not wounded or killed.
Later that day, in a letter written to his brother, John A. Washington, he said he was "protected beyond all human probability or expectation." He had two horses shot out from under him, he wrote, and after the battle found four bullet holes in his coat. He evidently saved the coat because many years later his step-grandchildren described seeing it.
Thats not the end of the story. The really interesting part was the testimony of a pioneer woman, Mary Draper Ingles, who was captured by a band of Shawnee Indians and held in their village for several months. She overheard French officers discussing the battle of the Monongahela with their Indian allies. An Indian chief named Red Hawk said he had shot at Washington eleven times and then ceased firing, convinced that the Great Spirit was protecting him.
Red Hawk didnt know who this individual was, of course, but at 6 feet, 2 inches, Washington was the tallest man around and an unforgettable figure on horseback.
Mrs. Ingles eventually made her escape, traveling hundreds of miles through the Blue Ridge Mountains to return home, and became famous throughout Virginia for her ordeal.
Did this amazing event really happen? Washingtons close friend and personal physician, Dr. James Craik, later wrote of meeting an elderly Indian chief who described the same battle in which the Indians ceased firing at Washington because they were convinced he was protected by the Great Spirit.
After Monongahela, Washington never seemed to miss an opportunity to ride into battle at the front of his troops, continually exposing himself to enemy fire.
I heard the bullets whistle, he once wrote to his brother Jack, and believe me there is something charming in the sound.
Parents who are looking for materials to teach their children about Washington should look for picture books written for age 4 to 8. The most complete one I have found is Giblins George Washington Picture Book Biography.
Other good ones are Cheneys Washington Crossed the Delaware; Adlers A Picture Book of George Washington; the pop-up book, George Washington, An Adventure in Courage by Troll Publishing; and an old favorite from 60 years ago still being sold online at Amazon, DAulaires George Washington.
The Dover Company still has George Washington paper dolls available as well as a nicely-drawn coloring book.
The Nest company produces an excellent animated video of Washington which can sometimes be found at public libraries, or online, and Washington dolls or action figures are also frequently seen online at eBay. Look for Hallmarks collection of soft cloth dolls of Revolutionary heroes.
Its always a good idea to hang a picture of Washington, preferably on horseback, in your childs bedroom.
And best of all, dont forget to point out George on the dollar bill and the quarter, the most effective way of introducing our first president to young children.
Mrs. McCluskey is the Director of the Three Rs School, a Montessori school.
"Show me just what Mohammed brought that was new, and there you will find things only evil and inhuman, such as his command to spread by the sword the faith he preached." - Manuel II Palelologus
But the Left absolutely loves these guys...
For Chavez and Castro both, doctor diplomacy is hugely flattering propaganda. Conversely, our attempts to lure those doctors away reinforces the callous, materialistic American stereotype that Chavez and Castro so prize.
Nice article, good find.
I can't get enough of that story. Supposedly Washington met some of those Indians many years later, and they told him how special they thought he was. This is the first I heard that they stopped firing on him.
Misguided motives for politically correct education have cut a deadly swath through public school textbooks, resulting in less and less information about the Founders.
If anyone thinks this is accidental, look again at WHO AND WHAT is doing it. Another slimey tentacle of liberalism and socialism.
At the Battle of Brandywine, British major Patrick Ferguson, leading a group of Redcoat sharpshooters, had an American officer dead in his sights at close range but on an impulse decided not to fire.
When he found later that the American was George Washington himself, Ferguson said, "I could have lodged half a dozen balls in him before he was out of my reach . . . but it was not pleasant to fire at the back of an unoffending individual who was acquitting himself very cooly of his duty - - so I let him live."
I've always said George Washington was one of our greatest citizens and barring none our greatest President,and I haven't changed my opinion !!!
Simon & Schuster Paperbacks, $14.00, published 2004.
I'll have to check it out,but if you care to give me a synopsis I wouldn't mind !!!
IMHO, his greatest character trait was his ability to give up power. When King George III heard that Washington had turned down the chance to be King of America, he at first refused to believe it, but then when it was confirmed said that Washington was "the greatest character of the age."
And if Washington hadn't retired after two terms, imagine the chaos if every President thereafter ran perpetually for the job, refusing to give up and go home.
Come to think of it, your average Congressperson doesn't seem to have learned anything from George's example.
That kind of leading from the front has been extinct for a long time.
Too bad for Ferguson the Whigs weren't feeling similarly magnaninous at the Battle of King's Mountain a year or two later:)
At the Battle of Princeton, New Jersey, January 3, 1777, as his troops were being driven back, early in the engagement, Washington on his white horse rode in front of his faltering troops to encourage them to hold firm. By doing this he put himself between his troops and the British who were less than 40 yards away.
The Britsh formed ranks and fired as did the Americans. Hundreds of muskets and rifles discharged with Washington riding between all of them. Gunsmoke obscured the scene and a Continental staff officer felt certain that Washington had been killed or wounded as it seemed impossible for anyone to escape unscathed.
A few moments later, Washington emerged upon his horse and rode to safety. Within minutes his forces regained their composure, advanced and defeated the British troops in their front.
The rest is history.
There's very little honor like that left in this world.
The idea was to build a canal for stretches that the river wasn't navigable...by 1802 it was possible to travel 200 miles above the falls of the Potomac, but the company which built the canals only paid a dividend one year.
The left would deprive us of our heroes and our common sense, if they were to have their way.
I couldn't agree more. They practically begged him to be king and he would have none of it.
BTW, my husband and I are having twin boys in a few weeks ... and the middle name of one of them is going to be Washington. :)