Mount Vernon is privately owned and will remain open in the case of a government shutdown.

"It is infinitely better to have a few good Men, than many indifferent ones."

Letter to James McHenry | Friday, August 10, 1798

Editorial Notes

Following his retirement from the presidency in March 1797, George Washington returned to Mount Vernon, fully expecting to go back to private life, with no more interruptions.  When conflict with France loomed about a year later, however, Washington’s successor, President John Adams, asked him to come back to act as Commander in Chief of the American Army.  Here Washington discusses a plan to begin recruiting for the army needed, in case the dispute with France leads to war.

George Washington to James McHenry | Friday, August 10, 1798

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