Time is passing by very quickly and already it is February. As a young student in school, I enjoyed studying and learning about presidents; February was referred to as President’s month.  We celebrated two of the most popular men we had in that office – George Washington and Abraham Lincoln.

Maybe we enjoyed learning about these men because we had February 12th or February 22nd off from school, we alternated years.

The stories in the early years at school brought-out the character of the men. We all know the story of Washington chopping down the cherry tree and later admitting it to his father.  

Another story involved Washington having false wooden teeth. He definitely had teeth problems. Ivory was used at that time and after use became stained which took on a wooden look. At the time of his presidency, he only had one tooth.

George Washington’s first job was as a surveyor. This acquainted him with the land he later, as a general, learned how to defend.  

Washington became a leader partly because of his physical build. He was 6’2”, taller by far than the average person in the 1700’s. Whether on foot or horseback, he was easy to see as he addressed the troops during the Revolutionary war.

Washington took a ragtag bunch of colonists to fight a superior force, the “British Army” and won only 3 battles. The other he fought in a defensive manner wearing out the British over 8 years.

Honesty was a great attribute to have as a person. Our sixteenth president known as “Honest Abe” possessed this reputation. Abraham Lincoln also had stature and was 6’4.”  Standing up front of a crowd to speak, height was always an advantage.  

Physical prowess on the frontier, where Lincoln lived, was an advantage. For building rail fences to wrestling matches, he was known throughout his pioneer county.  

Being dependable was another characteristic. Walking miles to return a book on time brought out the desire to learn and show dependability.  

Our country certainly needed a strong, dependable person to lead the United States through the challenging times during the Civil War.  

He did an unusual thing after being elected to the Presidency.  He chose a cabinet of advisors made up of both major political parties.

His speaking voice was not the best, but what he had to say has stayed with us over time – The Gettysburg Address.  


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