George Washington’s Mount Vernon Estate. 19th February, 2017.
During my tour, I learned many notable facts regarding the life of our first President of these United States. I learned 1) the rustication of the mansion; the outside of the mansion is actually woodmadde to look like stone and covered by sand and wet paint 2) the approximately 800 Enslaved African-Americans who tended to the farms and estate of George Washington; during Washington’s last year of life, appr. 200 worked on the four outlying farms, 11 supported the ground-mill and distillery, 87 lived at the Masion house farm 3) Slaves were given one “outfit” annually. I walked through his home, slave cabins, slave quarters, kitchen, washhouse, storehouse, smokehouse, clerk offices, gardens, blacksmith shop, barn, fishery, (etc.) and of course the beautiful Potomac River right behind his home.
It is well, with my soul.
The artifacts, nor the buildings was held at a high regard, but the facts, and deeper meanings of the operations of the governing body gave the most astonishing impact upon me. How and why things were put in place the way they were, rather than the partiality of a physical representation thereof. Washington’s legacy was removed (or not shined upon) within the curriculum of my education in Las Vegas. But visiting Mount Vernon gave me the opportunity to learn about General Washington, as a father, husband, leader, entrepreneur, and a man. This opportunity has answered questions I have had for years, but moreso reaped dozens more.
Visiting National Landmarks with slave history such as this estate, has made me see myself in a new light. There is absolutely no comparison when it comes to the treatment of my people from the 1700’s to now, and by my people I mean not just black people. I’m talking about any under privileged being on the North American continent.
We shall never forget their sacrifices. They got miseducated, tortured, humiliated, spit/pissed on, stolen, beat to death, raped, whipped, shot, eyes ripped out of their eye sockets, ripped in half, forcibly drowned, set on fire, hung, teeth beat out of their mouths, injected with poisons and cancerous diseases, and many other grim practices (some are still practiced today behind closed doors).
We, as a collective society have made much progress since then. I have the freedom to do whatever I need to do in order to fulfill my purpose. I’m not property that is owned by another human being. I get a free education up until 12th grade. I have running water, a roof over my head, and I don’t have to go outside to use the restroom. I have opportunities my ancestors would never dream of me having. I have obligations, opportunities, and options. I can get a fair job or create my own career, own land and build my own houses, read books and learn the truth behind many false premises and ideologies, and unite people for the greater good of the world.