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David M. Rubenstein Leadership Hall

In February 2013, in honor of George Washington’s birthday, David M. Rubenstein made a contribution toward the Washington Library’s construction and endowment. The David M. Rubenstein Leadership Hall, in recognition of Mr. Rubenstein’s generosity, is the Washington Library’s largest meeting space. Most of the Washington Library's major events including symposiums, public lectures, and book talks are held within the room. 

Mr. Rubenstein sponsored the Mount Vernon Leadership Fellows program from 2014-2018, which offers a dynamic and stimulating leadership curriculum taught within the Rubenstein Leadership Hall. The meeting room is also where students immerse themselves in the Situation Room Experience: Washington's Cabinet. This is also the space the George Washington Teacher Institute Residential Programs discuss innovative and engaging ways to teach about Washington and the 18th century. 

David M. Rubenstein Rare Books and Manuscripts Endowment

Mr. Rubenstein's gift also directed funds toward the establishment of the David M. Rubenstein Rare Books and Manuscripts Endowment, enabling Mount Vernon to grow and sustain its collection of original volumes and documents. It is through this generous endowment that the Washington Library has been able to purchase over 1,200 items, including the ones below.

The Monongahela, or Washington on the First Great Field of his Fame by George Washington Parke Custis, circa 1826

The Monongahela, or Washington on the First Great Field of his Fame by George Washington Parke Custis, circa 1826

RM-1197

An unpublished play written by the “adopted son of George Washington,” George Washington Parke Custis of Arlington House. 

Tobias Lear on behalf of Martha Washington to John Adams, 31 December 1799 and Tobias Lear to John Adams, 1 January 1800

Tobias Lear on behalf of Martha Washington to John Adams, 31 December 1799 and Tobias Lear to John Adams, 1 January 1800

RM-1212.001

Letters from Martha Washington and Tobias Lear regarding Congress’ request to permanently inter George Washington within a mausoleum inside the United States Capitol.  

31 December 1799 Letter

1 January 1800 Letter

Tobias Lear to Burgess Ball, 15 December 1799

RM-1209

Tobias Lear informed Burgess Ball of George Washington’s passing. 

The Virginia almanack for the year 1777 by David Rittenhouse (Williamsburg, VA: Printed and sold by Dixon & Hunter, [1776])

RL-6619

An early Virginia almanac with a manuscript account of a visit to Mount Vernon written on the book's back leaves. The author is unconfirmed but is thought to be a descendant of John Paul Barringer.

John Parke Custis to George Washington, 29 May 1778

RM-1218

A letter about various aspects of the war and includes a note to his mom.

Andrew Elliott to Thomas Mifflin, 5 June 1794

RM-1219

A letter from Andrew Elliott, the surveyor general of the United States, disapproving of Washington’s policies regarding Native Americans. 

Thomas Paine to John Hustler, 8 December 1789

Thomas Paine to John Hustler, 8 December 1789

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In this letter, Thomas Paine writes about issues of a new constitution in France and directly transcribed Washington’s address to the Society of Quakers (written by him c. 13 October 1789, in response to their address, c. 3 October 1789).

Full Document

16th January 1794: Gentleman of the Senate and of the House of Representatives, I transmit for your information, certain intelligence lately received from Europe, as it relates to the subject of my past communications by George Washington ([Philadelphia: Printed by Childs and Swaine, 1794).

RL-6642

Gouverneur Morris' (Minister to France) diplomatic correspondence and the French response, as well as the report on the Navigation Act in which France severely restricted the activities of foreign shipping and navigation.

Bound sheet music for Eleanor “Nelly” Parke Custis, 1794

Bound sheet music for Eleanor “Nelly” Parke Custis, 1794

RL-6634

A volume of bound opera music, La Cifra by Antonio Salieri with an inscription, likely in Washington’s hand: “Brought from Rome for E. P. Custis, presented by Signore Cerrachi, 1794.” 

The Ephemera Collection

The Ephemera Collection

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In 2016, the library acquired a collection of approximately 500 items of ephemera related to the memory and popular image of George Washington. The collection greatly expands our ephemera holdings and provides researchers with raw materials to view how Washington has infused the popular imagination and national psyche over the years.

Mémoire contenant le précis des faits, avec leurs pièces justificatives. Pour servir de réponse aux Observations (sur le Mémoire de la France) envoyées par les Ministres d'Angleterre dans les Cours de l'Europe by Jacob Nicolas Moreau (Paris, 1756). First edition.

Mémoire contenant le précis des faits, avec leurs pièces justificatives. Pour servir de réponse aux Observations (sur le Mémoire de la France) envoyées par les Ministres d'Angleterre dans les Cours de l'Europe by Jacob Nicolas Moreau (Paris, 1756). First edition.

2016-SC-016

This French publication of Washington’s Journal was created from Washington’s notes and other papers which were found by the French at Fort Necessity. It was issued by the French government, and transmitted to the courts of Europe as a justification of the war with England and to support the French claim that Washington murdered

Engraved calling card, Martha Washington, 1796

Engraved calling card, Martha Washington, 1796

2016-SC-046

"Mrs. Washington's card left at my husband's lodgings at Mr. Saml. Caldwell's North Fourth Street Philadelphia in the year 1796."

Map of George Washington’s Land at MountVernon Fairfax Cty Virginia: As It Was & As It Is

Map of George Washington’s Land at MountVernon Fairfax Cty Virginia: As It Was & As It Is

TC-877

A map of Washington's land in Fairfax, Virginia. 

Account with Joseph Corre, 1790 April 15 – July 7

Account with Joseph Corre, 1790 April 15 – July 7

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Accounts between the President's household in New York and local confectioner Joseph Corre. Includes purchases of macaroni, bitter almonds, caraway seed, and ice cream. On April 15, the President's household purchased "dinner drest," when John and Abigail Adams, John Jay, and Thomas Jefferson dined with him.

Full Document

Fenwick Mason to George Washington, 1789 December 5

2018-SC-029

Addressed to His Excellency George Washington Esq. President of the United States of America the letter makes reference to various wines ordered by the President for entertaining, including "26 dozen claret and 12 dozen vins de grave."

Eliza Parke Custis, Boston, to Gideon Snow, 1828 October 10 with George Washington letter, 1785 September 10, and fragment of velvet from Washington’s coat.

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Memoirs of Andrew Jackson, Major-General in the Army of the United States; and Commander in Chief of the Division of the South, by S. Putnam Waldo, Esq. (Hartford: J. and W. Russell, 1819).

Memoirs of Andrew Jackson, Major-General in the Army of the United States; and Commander in Chief of the Division of the South, by S. Putnam Waldo, Esq. (Hartford: J. and W. Russell, 1819).

2019-SC-011-001

This book includes a manuscript note from Eliza Parke Custis to the Marquis de Lafayette.

Manuscript letters and documents

An archive of 162 letters and 2 receipts containing letters to and from John Augustine Washington III at Mount Vernon from 1837-1861.

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