Slavery At Mount Vernon

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Why Did George Washington Have Slaves?

Slavery At Mount Vernon
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Slavery: George Washington's "Only Unavoidable Subject of Regret"

9,135 views July 19, 2019
George Washington’s life has been scrutinized by historians over the past three centuries, but the day-to-day lives of Mount Vernon’s enslaved workers have been largely left out of the story. Until now. Historian Mary Thompson's new book, "The Only Unavoidable Subject of Regret": George Washington, Slavery, and the Enslaved Community at Mount Vernon explores the enslaved community in greater detail than ever before. Learn more: 0:00:07 What do we know about Washington’s early history with slavery? 0:01:15 What does slavery look like in Virginia during Washington’s youth? 0:02:40 Is there opposition to slavery during this time period? 0:03:24 What do the Quakers say about slavery? 0:03:43 In 1759, what happened to change Washington’s view of slavery? 0:05:31 After George and Martha Washington’s marriage, are they managing more than one plantation? 0:06:32 What is the day-to-day experience of someone managing multiple plantations in several Virginia counties? 0:07:12 How did Washington manage his plantation managers? 0:07:56 Did Washington’s letters to the plantation managers survive? 0:08:32 Did Washington purchase enslaved people? 0:09:45 Are the enslaved people that Washington is purchasing newly enslaved from Africa? 0:10:08 In the 1760s, does Washington show any changes in his thoughts on slavery? 0:11:04 Did the views of George Mason affect Washington? 0:12:05 Before the Revolutionary War, what is the scale of Washington’s ownership of enslaved people? 0:13:33 How did the Revolutionary War change Washington’s view of slavery? 0:15:58 Did Washington try to keep enslaved families together? 0:17:28 What was the quality of life of enslaved people during the Revolutionary War? 0:18:50 How does a war for liberty and rights affect enslaved people? 0:19:54 Are enslaved people running to the British? 0:20:22 What is the state of the Mount Vernon estate at the end of the Revolutionary War? 0:22:09 What labor and trades are enslaved people involved in at Mount Vernon? 0:23:58 What do enslaved artisans and craftspeople do at Mount Vernon? 0:25:11 What did Martha Washington do about slavery? 0:26:42 How involved was Washington in the management of enslaved people? 0:29:24 How involved was Washington in the punishment of enslaved people? 0:30:23 What was life like for enslaved children; at what age did they begin working? 0:32:33 What records did you use to write this book? 0:33:22 Do the records held by Mount Vernon document the events and people of the time? 0:34:10 Tell us about Hercules, an enslaved person, working as a cook at Mount Vernon. 0:37:40 Did George Washington own enslaved people while president? 0:38:50 Tell us the story of Ona Judge. 0:44:05 After Ona Judge ran away, how did the Washingtons deal with the situation? 0:46:10 When did Washington become an anti-slavery advocate? 0:48:01 What is the state of the Mount Vernon estate as Washington ends his presidency? 0:48:34 What is the size of the enslaved population at Mount Vernon and what are Washington’s plans? 0:49:59 After many years of living together, what happened when those enslaved by Washington and the Custis estate were separated? 0:51:29 What does Washington’s 1799 will say about those enslaved? 0:54:31 What is the relationship between the Washingtons and their long-serving enslaved people? 0:57:48 Compare Washington as a slave owner to other slave owners. 0:59:23 Did freed enslaved people remain at Mount Vernon? 1:01:24 Is there an effort to study the DNA of the enslaved people buried at Mount Vernon? 1:05:10 How does learning about slavery impact our understanding of Washington?
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