George Washington – The Most Influential Founding Father of America
Washington has greatly impacted America’s history through the present day. The ways in which he has impacted America’s history include leading the Continental Army, influencing the government as well as becoming the first president of the United States. Leading the Continental Army, he gave America an opportunity to succeed.
Backing up constitutional values and the effect he had on the government changed the way Americans look at the Constitution and its government. Becoming the first president of the United States, he set an example for what all future presidents should aspire to. George Washington’s decisions and actions would affect the United States for years to come including and up to the present time. George Washington was born in 1732 and influenced the United States until his passing in 1799, and continues to do so (Nevins). Washington depicted himself as the first true American, putting all British characteristics and ideals out of mind.
George Washington was the Major General and Commander-in-Chief of the Continental Army. Despite many other options for who may lead this army, Washington brought forth different perspectives and strategic planning to fight the British. He led the army to victory, ending the military struggle for American Independence. His close coordination with governors and state militias, his cooperative relations with Congress, and his professional attention to supplies, logistics, and training all contributed to the success of the Continental Army (Mount Vernon). Witnessing first hand, Britain’s formation in North America, he knew how vulnerable it was. After closely studying Britain’s army he used this to America’s advantage and used tactics to defeat the British. Though the war took many twists and turns including apparent defeat, Washington’s confidence never wavered, and this kept his army in high spirits. George Washington’s militaristic mindset led the Continental Army to victory. After the war ended Washington did something that would forever astonish many. He surrendered his military commission, whereas in many instances, military leaders would seize political power in times of revolution (Continental Army). Washington’s values helped shape what he believed America should be and many of these values are still present in our military and government today.
Washington not only had militaristic influences but also influences in the government of America, in the past and in the present. He knew first hand the effects of the taxes that the British government was imposing and knew that it was in America’s best interest to declare independence from Great Britain. He was a delegate in the first Continental Congress, served in the Virginia House of Burgess, and the Second Continental Congress. He backed up the Constitution and led our country while implementing the thoughts and plans of other brilliant minds so that the country would one day thrive (Biography.com Editors). Washington’s approach on America’s future government was to create one that would not only benefit their current time but also many more lifetimes to come. Many brilliant minds knew his potential and put him forth to lead them. In 1787, he was elected president of the convention that wrote the U.S. Constitution (History.com Editors). Washington’s influence over the government and its values altered the constitution and shaped America’s ideals of freedom and liberty. He was a big advocate for a robust national government. He helped to put forth his ideas while working side by side with other founding fathers. Washington played the biggest part in America’s current government by being exactly the person that America had needed at the time, to put forth ideas for a strong central government that would benefit for years to come. (?) In the further years he would hold the greatest authority that an American citizen could.
From 1789 until 1797, George Washington served as the first President of the United States. He came to have this authority through his exquisite leadership at the Constitutional Convention, which drafted the Constitution. His leadership impressed his fellow delegates to the point at which they believed he was the most qualified to be the nation’s first president. Despite at first just wanting to return to a quiet life, public opinion swayed him comply. (History.com Editors). Realizing that the way he handled the job would impact how future presidents approached the position, he handed down a legacy of strength, integrity and national purpose (History.com Editors). Understanding how he would impact future presidents, he put forth what he believed was to benefit the nation in the best way possible. Beginning with foreign matters, …he supported cordial relations with other countries but also favored a position of neutrality in foreign conflicts (History.com Editors). This was because he knew that it was in America’s best interest not to begin any new unnecessary fighting, after just becoming independent from Great Britain. As well as keeping relations intact outside of the new nation, he also appointed two cabinet members that had opposing views on government. This he believed was essential to the health of the new government. Washington knew exactly how to handle being the nation’s first President, constantly showing strength and knowledge of what he was doing, and the purpose that it held.
George Washington was the most influential founding father of his time and is still looked favorably upon by current leaders and people of high ranking. His military ideas, continue to play a role in the United States military today. His beliefs regarding what should be done to create a strong central government for the US are still seen today. Especially when there are current debates in present day, documents are still reviewed to decide the fate of many by what the original founding fathers meant in the Constitution. Being the First President of the United States Washington made clear his values and beliefs to what a president should do and hold up to. George Washington’s overall charisma and understanding of a number of things not only altered the pasts’ history but also the current future. Washington to this day continues to impact people, places, and ideas of what an American should be. Many suggest that he will be the only and best ‘American’ to ever walk on American soil.
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