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Washington, Augustine

Posthumous 1867 lithograph of Augustine Washington

Augustine Washington (November 12, 1694 - April 12, 1743) was the father of U.S. President George Washington. He belonged to the Colony of Virginia's landed gentry and was a planter and slaveholder.

Washington was born in Westmoreland, Colony of Virginia, on November 12, 1694 as the son of Lawrence Washington and Mildred Warner. He was only four years old when his father died and he inherited about 1,000 acres on Bridges Creek in Westmoreland County. When he came of age in 1715, he married and settled on the Bridges Creek property. He was active in the Anglican Church and in local politics. He took the oath as justice of the peace for the county court in July 1716, and served as county sheriff. In 1718, Washington purchased land on Popes Creek, abridging the property on Bridges Creek. He had a new house built there about 1726 and moved there officially with his wife and two sons.

It was an ideal place to access the large ships on the Potomac River via flat bottom boats and other small craft. He had great success growing tobacco, since England had an insatiable appetite for tobacco and merchants paid top prices for it. He used a keen sense of investment and speculation and began to purchase as much land as he could obain in the area. In 1738, Washington purchased the 150-acre Strother property across the Rappahannock River and moved there with the family at the end of the same year. The Rappahannock River, although not as wife as the Potomac River, was still a viable artery for commerce. The town of Fredericksburg was emerging as a thriving port of commerce as well.

Washington amassed a tremendous amount of land and wealth. He carefully arranged for his sons to settle in nice plantation homes in splendid locations. On April 12, 1743, Washington died from a chill not long after being surprised by a sudden downpour of rain while riding his horse.

Family Edit

Washington married Jane Butler, an orphan who had inherited about 640 acres from her father, in 1715. She died in 1731.

  • Lawrence Washington - m. Jane Fairfax
  • Augustine Washington, Jr. - m. Anne Aylett
  • Jane Washington (1722-1735) - died young.
  • Butler Washington - infant.

Washington married second to Mary Ball in March 6, 1731 when she was 22 years old. He had met her at the home of her brother, Joseph Ball, outside London, England, when he was in England on business and visiting his sons, Lawrence and Augustine, who were students at the prestigious preparatory school, Appleby's. Washington was sick and Ball nursed him back to health. He returned to Virginia and learned his wife, Jane Butler, had died during his journey abroad. When the widower heard that Ball returned to Virginia, he went over to where she lived and proposed.

  • George Washington - m. Martha Dandridge
  • Betty Washington Lewis - m. Fielding Lewis
  • Samuel Washington - m. (1) Jane Champe (2) Mildred Thornton (3) Lucy Chapman (4) Anne Steptoe (5) Susannah Perrin
  • John Augustine Washington - m. Hannah Bushrod
  • Charles Washington - m. Mildred Thornton
  • Mildred Washington (1739-1740) - infant.
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