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Martha Washington Facts

Martha Washington

Facts about Martha Washington

Biography Summary: Martha Washington (1731 - 1802) was famous for being the very first First Lady of the United States.

At a young age Martha was left a widow with four children to look after. Sadly, her first two children died very young, her daughter, died as a teenager and her son, John, died from a fever but did have a family of his own leaving four children.

These children became the children of Martha her second husband George Washington, who were unable to have children of their own.

It is said she was a very independent and self-assured woman more than capable of fending for herself and her plantations, often negotiating with London buyers directly for the sale of her produce.

She loved her husband George very much and when he became President, although it was not her wish, she stood by his side and acted as his hostess whenever the need arose. She outlived both her husbands and her children but lived a long and happy life.

Martha Washington Fact Sheet: Who was Martha Washington? The following short biography and fact sheet provides interesting facts about the life, times and history of Martha Washington.

Martha Washington Fact File Biography: Lifespan: 1731 - 1802 *** Full Name: Martha Washington *** Nickname: Lady Washington *** Occupation: Wife, Mother and First Lady of the United States *** Date of Birth: Martha Washington was born on June 2nd 1731 *** Place of Birth: Martha Washington was born in Chestnut Grove, British Colony, Province of Virginia *** Family background: Her father was John Dandridge and English immigrant who would become a Virginian planter and her mother was Frances Jones who was of French, Welsh and English descent *** Early life and childhood: She grew up three brothers and four sisters *** Education: Martha Washington would have received a very basic education ***

Martha Washington Fact 1: Martha Washington was born on June 2nd 1731 and during the 18th century period in history when France and America both went through revolutions and the Industrial Revolution began in Britain.

Martha Washington Fact 2: As was customary for the time Martha was married at eighteen years of age to Daniel Parke Custis, a wealthy planter twenty years her senior. Together they had four children, their first two children died very young and their second two children lived into adulthood.

Martha Washington Fact 3: When she was barely twenty five years of age she became widow when her husband died leaving her a very wealthy young woman which included five plantations, several hundred slaves as well as the trustee in control of her minor childrenís inheritances. She very capably bargained with London merchants over the best prices for her tobacco.

Martha Washington Fact 4: When she was twenty seven years of age she met George Washington, also twenty seven. It is thought because Washington lived in the same locale, he probably knew both Martha and her husband.

Martha Washington Fact 5: As a young and wealthy widow she was courted by not only Washington but another wealthier suitor, Charles Carter but it was Washington that would win the day.

Martha Washington Fact 6: Martha and George were married and although they had no children of their own they raised her remaining children together.

Martha Washington Fact 7: Her daughter sadly died in her teenage years during an epileptic seizure. Her remaining son, John Parke Custis, Jacky, would become an aide to Washington at the time of the siege of Yorktown during the American Revolution in 1781. He married and had his own children but during the war he contracted camp fever and died, leaving his wife with four children to raise.

Martha Washington Fact 8: Washington and Martha took on two of Johnís children, Eleanor and George and raised them as their own. They also frequently provided financial and personal support for various nephews, nieces and various other family members on both sides of their family.

Martha Washington Fact 9: Even though Martha was more than happy to reside at any one of her various homes she was frequently found at her husbandís side and often helped keep moral raised among the officers under her husbandís command.

Martha Washington Fact 10: Post war she was less than happy to have her husband take the office of President and was did not appear for his inauguration but once in office she assumed the role of First Lady and was the perfect hostess to many state affairs held in New York and Philadelphia.

Martha Washington Fact 11: After the death of her first husband although financially she was taken care of for life, the bulk of the fortune was held in trust for his heirs and even though none of their children survived their son John did have a family and four children of his own who were in line to inherit the estates, slaves and money.

Martha Washington Fact 12: Martha and George tried their best to do what was right with the slaves they owned, pledging to free them when they were both dead and managing to keep those families together that had married and had families of their own. Not always an easy task.

Martha Washington Fact 13: When Washington died he left his slaves to his wife with the stipulation that upon her death his slaves would be freed. For fear that her life was in jeopardy she arranged for her husbandís slaves to be free within a year after his death.

Martha Washington Fact 14: She did not however emancipate any of her own slaves and when she died their ownership transferred to her grandchildren.

Martha Washington Fact 15: Martha Washington died at Mount Vernon on May 22nd 1802 aged seventy years. Her body laid to rest with that of her husband at their home in Mount Vernon.

Influence & Legacy: Martha Washington was the first First Lady of the United States and as such set a high precedence for following First Ladyís to support their husbands and be gracious hostesses. After her death she would also be honored by having several vessels named for her such as the USS Lady Washington and the USS Martha Washington. She would also become the first American woman to her likeness used an a U.S. postage stamp as well as U.S. currency and coins.

Short Facts about Martha Washington for Kids
The above short facts detail interesting information about the life, milestones, history and key events that occurred during the life of Martha Washington.
A fast, simple way to present a short biography of Martha Washington with important dates and info that provides details such as the date of birth (birthday), place of birth, education, family, work and career. An ideal educational resource for kids, schools, teachers and social studies.

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