George Washington carefully drafted this elegant west elevation of his Mount Vernon mansion. It provides insight into Washington's plans for the second major expansion of his home. The elevation has wide doors and nearly symmetrical windows, while the final construction favored transom lights and the powerful exterior asymmetry of windows, preserving the symmetry of the interior rooms. The undated manuscript was probably drafted prior to construction, which began in 1774. This is the only extant exterior drawing of the mansion made by George Washington. On the verso, also in Washington's hand, is a floor plan for the mansion's cellar.


AD (Autograph Document) One page with images on recto and verso. Partial watermark, center of top edge. Unidentifiable watermark of a crest of a lion with a sword, inside a circle, topped by a crown. The lion is similar to Gravell, Foreign Watermarks 728.






Ink, laid paper


Overall: 6 1/2 in. x 8 1/8 in. (16.51 cm x 20.64 cm)

Credit Line

Gift of Martha Johnston Kountze, 1947


Verso, lower left (at left side of plan), in brown ink: Door
Verso, center (inside plan), in brown ink: Cellar Kitchen
Verso, center (inside plan), in brown ink: Passage
Verso, lower right corner, in brown ink: Door & win / dow over it / to give a light / into ye Passage / ? the same / kind of Door / [indecipherable] as at the / end ?

Object Number


Colors (Beta)

Mount Vernon's object research is ongoing and information about this object is subject to change. For information on image use and reproductions, click here.
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