Colonel Dodge served as Superintendent (a position later known as Resident Director, and now President) for 52 years, from 1885 to 1937.

Important restoration work and the return of Washington family treasures to Mount Vernon were also done under Dodge's careful guidance.Harrison H. Dodge oversaw every detail of the maintenance and operations of the estate.

Protecting the Mansion from fire was one of his main priorities. Under his supervision the first Ford fire engine was donated, and kerosene lamps were replaced with Edison's electric lighting.

He genially hosted VIPs including U.S. Presidents and their families, royalty, foreign diplomats, and celebrities.

Famous visitors

Dodge's Diary

The first page of Dodge's diary (MVLA)

Colonel Dodge kept a diary every year he served as Superintendent. The diaries give information on the weather, grounds and restoration work, noteworthy visitors, and attendance.

The first diary entry written by Harrison Howell Dodge, the third Superintendent of Mount Vernon, reads:

Diary kept by Harrison H. Dodge, Resident Secretary and Superintendent at Mount Vernon. Appointed June 29/85 – Entered upon duties July 15th 1885. May God bless my efforts –

His diary entries are kept in the collections of the Archives of the Mount Vernon Ladies’ Association today.

Preservation at Mount Vernon

The mission of the Mount Vernon Ladies' Association is to preserve, restore, and manage the estate of George Washington to the highest standards and to educate visitors and people throughout the world about the life and legacies of George Washington, so that his example of character and leadership will continue to inform and inspire future generations.

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