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Celebrating Washington’s Birthday: A Presidential Blog Round-Up

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By law, February 16th is called Washington’s Birthday, in honor of the first president of the United States after the ratification of the Constitution. However, many now use the day to honor or commemorate all U.S. presidents.

Are you looking for ways to celebrate George Washington or others who have held the highest office in the United States? Teaching with the Library of Congress has published a number of posts documenting their lives and experiences  using primary sources from the Library’s collections.

“Inaugural Balls of the Past,” in the Inaugural Program, Inauguration. Franklin D. Roosevelt President of the United States

Washington, Jefferson and Lincoln: A Primary Source Set Honoring Three Presidents
Explore the legacy of three of our most important presidents using primary sources. This set includes resources that will help younger students understand the lives and how we commemorate these three individuals.

Beyond the Oath: Presidential Inaugurations Past to Present in Library of Congress Primary Sources
Explore the importance of the presidential inauguration and how the tone set at the inauguration can set the tone for the presidency.

George Washington: Living the “Rules of Civility”
Explore the rules that guided Washington’s behavior and helped him successfully navigate the experience of being the new nation’s first president.

Sculpture of Lincoln as captain in militia, 192-?
Sculpture of Lincoln as captain in militia, 192-?

The Person Behind the Presidency: Humanizing History
Explore the writings of Theodore Roosevelt to learn more about the man behind the office.

Point of View in Statues of Abraham Lincoln: Three Looks at a Leader – A Primary Source Starter
Explore how different memorials honor the life of Abraham Lincoln.

How do you plan to celebrate President’s Birthday? Let us know in the comments.

Comments (2)

  1. Do you include George Washington’s 3 year ad for his slave Ona? Or that he had 4 slaves during his term as Pres? That 12 Pres owned slaves, 8 while serving as Pres? How would a teacher handle this info?

    Thanks so much for your answer.

    • In terms of the questions about the Washington papers you may wish to contact the Manuscript Division to see if they have the items you mentioned. We have another blog post by Julie Miller on Martha Morris who washed clothes for Washington that may also be of interest.

      As for how to teach about the presidents and their ownership of slave I’ll turn it back to the readers of the blog. I hope they will respond to your question.

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