Friday, February 22, 2013

Celebrating George Washington Birthday

(Google Image)

By Diane Forrest

On Monday we celebrated President's day, a "floating" holiday, since it always happens on the third Monday in February.  This allows all government employees a long weekend, and alot of businesses an opportunity to get some good sales advertised.  Before President's day, we celebrated Lincoln’s birthday, which was February 12th, and Washington's Birthday, which was February 22.  This makes me wonder why we never celebrated the presidents in between those two.  Well to cut down on all that paid time off, the powers that be decided to combine the two, and include all presidents in the President Day holiday.
Today is George Washington's actual birthday, and he was born in Westmoreland County, Virginia.  This is near the site of Mount Vernon where his family home is located, and where he lived til the end of his life and is now buried there.
(Google Image)

There are some states that continue to celebrate his birth and since 1862 there has been a tradition in the United States Senate that George Washington's Farewell Address be read on his birthday. Citizens had asked that this be done in light of the approaching Civil War. The annual tradition continues with the reading of the address on or near Washington's Birthday.
Washington was not only the first president of the country; he is also the one who set the bar.  He did not want to start a monarchy, but have the presidency, and keep a time limit.  He moved the capital from New York to Washington.
Today we remember George Washington, and celebrate his birth by spending a few dollars.

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