And so did 677 overnight guests in a single year at Mount Vernon during Washington’s lifetime, according to this article about improvements and additions to his beloved home. Most of the improvements sound at least a little bit intriguing, and probably will— as the management hopes— grab the interest of hyperactive small boys. Although in the era of flashy superheroes with superhuman powers, fostering such an interest would be an uphill fight, but not one which Washington himself would have declined.

Washington himself has always seemed just a little bit super-human. He even awed his contemporaries, who were themselves no ordinary matter of men, but Washington seems to stand head above even such as John Addams and Thomas Jefferson. He was not their equal in intellect, nor an outstandingly gifted soldier, but he was a patriot in the finest sense of the word, and drew upon the respect and allegiance of those who were. His personal integrity was adamantine, unyielding, constant as day and night, sun moon and stars, matched to a strong will and that invaluable quality in a leader… the ability to draw in others, over their own better judgment. There were indeed moments during the American Revolution when it seemed that the only thing that held the enterprise together was Washington and his little, rag-tag army… and the only thing holding the Army together was the force of his own will. An understanding of the man and his times is perhaps something we need at this time.

“Sgt Mom” is a freelance writer and retired Air Force NCO, who blogs at www.sgtstryker.com, and lives in San Antonio, Texas.

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