The Life Guard Society fall event will no longer take place. It will be postponed until September 26, when the Life Guard will join all of Mount Vernon’s leadership groups in coming together to support the estate’s mission of education and preservation. More invitation materials for this gathering will come your way later this year. In the meantime, please mark your calendar and plan to join us!


Washington, The Entrepreneur

Many people know George Washington was a planter and a businessperson, but few realize the extent of his investments and his entrepreneurial endeavors. While Mount Vernon started as a typical Chesapeake tobacco plantation, under Washington’s ownership it transformed into a robust business operation that pushed the limits of American agriculture and manufacturing.

Washington began his merchant milling business in 1770 with the construction of a new gristmill at his Dogue Run Farm. In 1791, he upgraded his operation by installing innovative milling improvements that could produce 5,000 to 8,000 pounds of flour and cornmeal a day. Today, the water wheel in the gristmill still turns and the mighty gears still rotate as part of a fully-functioning Oliver Evans system that grinds grain for use in the Mount Vernon Inn kitchen and Shops.

In January 1797, Mount Vernon farm manager James Anderson proposed that George Washington begin rye and corn whiskey production. In 1799, the Mount Vernon farm ledgers recorded over eighty transactions for a total sale of 10,942 gallons of whiskey, valued at $7,674.

George Washington's Gristmill

For questions regarding the event please contact Kenneth Hill at or 703-799-8666. 

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Estate Hours

9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

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