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Bier Carriers

The following individuals served as the bier carriers at George Washington's funeral:

Lawrence Hooff, Jr.
Probably the son of Alexandria butcher and cartwright Lawrence Hooff, to whom George Washington sold cattle and sheep in the summer of 1786.1 The senior Hooff built a townhouse at 521 Duke Street, which was rented by George Washington's nephew, Bushrod Washington and his wife between 1789 and 1791.2 By 1812, Lawrence Hooff, Jr., was serving as a "sub director" of the Sun Fire Company in Alexandria.3

James Turner
One of four lieutenants of the 106th Regiment of Virginia chosen to carry George Washington's body from the mansion to the tomb on December 18, 1799.4

George Wise
The son of Peter Wise, Sr. and Anna Bolling Wise,  George Wise was born in Alexandria, Virginia in 1780. Wise fought in the 108th Virginia Militia as a cadet, the same unit that his father had fought with during the American Revolution, under the command of George Washington.5 George Wise's father built the townhouse at 501 Duke Street in Alexandria in 1778 that was later owned by George Washington's nephew, George Augustine Washington and his wife, Fanny Bassett Washington. After George Augustine's death, his widow married Washington's secretary, Tobias Lear and the Lears entertained George Washington at dinner in this house in September of 1795.6 At some point in the late eighteenth or early nineteenth century, George Wise purchased Abingdon, which had been the home of Martha Washington's son, John Parke Custis and his wife, Eleanor Calvert.7

George Coryell
The builder of a frame house at 206 Duke Street in Alexandria around 1794. Coryell was the son of Cornelius Coryell of Coryell's Ferry in New Jersey, who acted as a guide for George Washington during the Revolution.8

William Moss
One of four men of the 106th Regiment of Virginia who were chosen as bier carriers at George Washington's funeral, it was Lieutenant William Moss, who "broke down under the weight of the casket in removing the bier from the mansion to the tomb."9 Two years after George Washington's death, William Moss was appointed clerk of the Fairfax County Court. By 1811, Moss owned land along the Little River Turnpike and seven years later was involved with a group trying to establish the Middle Turnpike Company.10

Notes
1.
The Diaries of George Washington, Vol. 4 (Charlottesville, Virginia: University Press of Virginia, 1976-1979), 349 and 349n.

2. Ethelyn Cox, Historic Alexandria Virginia Street by Street (Alexandria, Virginia: Historic Alexandria Foundation, 1976), 26.

3. T. Michael Miller, Artisans and Merchants of Alexandria, Virginia, 1780-1820, Vol. 2 (Bowie, Maryland:  Heritage Books, Inc., 1992),  2:162.

4. Mary G. Powell, The History of Old Alexandria, Virginia, From July 13, 1749 to May 24, 1861 (Richmond, Virginia:  The William Byrd Press, Inc., 1928), 208.

5. George Wise Wilson Gunn, "Let George Do It!  He Was a Pallbearer of George Washington: A Portrait of George Wise of Virginia, 1799," unpublished paper, 1999.

6. Cox, 25.

7. Ann Allman, "Abingdon Ruins Re-Open," The Mount Vernon Gazette, December 12, 1998.

8. Cox, 20.

9. Powell, 208.

10. Miller, Artisans and Merchants, Vol. 1, 334, 347, 2:88.