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" A natural parent has only two things principally to consider, the improvement of his son, and the finances to do it with. "

Letter to Dr. Boucher | Sunday, May 13, 1770

Editorial Notes

Jonathan Boucher was hired to tutor John Parke Custis in 1768 and by 1770 had requested an education plan that involved traditional studies as well as travel.  Washington was concerned about his step-son’s ability to remain disciplined in this course of study.  Also feeling that his choices were under more harsh inspection, he distinguished his parental role for the child and relayed the distinction he feels between a “natural parent” and a “Guardian.” 

From George Washington to Jonathan Boucher, 13 May 1770