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Young George Washington’s Adventures:

See “Young George Washington NPS” for worksheet


1. What year starts the activity? 1753 (Slide #1)

2. England and France have been fighting for power and land for hundreds of years.

3. There are two soldiers battling. Describe the fight & weapons. What is the purpose of using this image?

The soldiers are battling using swords and shields. The purpose of the image is show the many, many years the 2 countries have been fighting.

4. The British & French were fighting over the Ohio River Valley. Describe the location of the area: (Slide 2) It is on the Northern part of North America, Northeast or a relative location description.

5. How would you compare the size of disputed territory to the size of the British territory? Almost the same.

6. List the main Indian nations (3) living in the region (Slide 3): Seneca, Shawnee, and Delaware Nations

7. How is the region identified on the map to the left? A Red circle with a star in the center

8. What is the purpose of the image of the man & woman (Slide 3)? To show the typical Native American

9. The 1st step in diplomacy is often some form of communication. What was the response of King George II to the French building forts in the disputed territory? (Complete sentence) The King is asking the French to peacefully leave the area.

10. The messenger would need to travel wilderness paths during the winter and negotiate with American Indians and the French. It would be a very difficult and hazardous journey. – thoughts of Virginia Governor Robert Dinwiddie.

HOMEWORK: Assume you are helping to select a candidate for this job. Come up with 3 interview questions that might separate the candidate. Also select the 3 most important characteristics you would want in an ideal candidate. List the characteristic and explain the value of each trait.

11. George Washington was 21 years old when he accepted the mission. Imagine you are Washington. Write 3 sentences about your feelings and hopes for the mission. (Slide 6)

12. 3 Characteristics that would make George Washington an ideal candidate. He travelled on the

Frontier as a surveyor. He was young & strong. (Slide 7)

What kind of things do you think George Washington would bring on his trip?

Activity: Rollover items for descriptions. Drag the correct items into the crate.

Items taken Items not needed reason why item is not needed

1. Camping Gear 1. Horse & carriage there were no roads, only paths for horses

& walking

2. Hatchet (cutting wood) 2. Books & violins not an essential item

3. Trade Good Gifts it was important to 3. Iron

Provide gifts to the American Indians

4. Journal He would need to take many notes

5. Compass

6. Shaving kit

Washington left on October 21, 1753. On his way to Wills Creek, gathering

People & supplies along the way.

Activity: Clothing of the 1750s (Major in the Virginia Militia)

Items taken brief description

1. musket:The main firearm of soldiers during Washington’s lifetime. Muskets were cheap to make, easy to use, and had a fast firing rate of 3 shots per minute

2. Tricorn hat: The tricorn was a round hat folded up on 3 sides & was the style worn by young gentlemen, like Washington. Military tricorns were often quite fancy with bright edge lace and different colored ribbons called cockades.

3. Shot bag: A shot bag is used to carry necessary items to make a musket work. Bullets, tools, spare gun flints, and cleaning supplies were kept in this handy pouch.

4. Belt with Sword and Bayonet: The belt was called a double frog and held important items for soldier duty, a sword, and bayonet. The bayonet was a blade that fits on the end of the musket barrel. Washington carried a fancy sword since he was an officer.

5. Canteen:  Canteens held water, the British soldier’s canteen was made of metal which sometimes imparted a bad taste to the water.

6. Military Uniform: British soldiers were issued one full uniform a year, which included a red wool coat, knee breeches, shirts, and socks. As an officer, Washington was responsible for purchasing his own uniform.

7. Gaiters: Heavy linen gaiters protected a soldier’s lower legs and hose (stockings). Pants of the time, called knee breeches, only reached below the knees.

8.  Shoes: Leather shoes are straight last, which means there were no right or left shoes. The shoes were tightened across the foot using a buckle. Washington may have worn knee high riding boots instead of gaiters and shoes.

November 14th 1753

Who was Washington’s guide? Christopher Gist

Copy the description of the guide A skilled wilderness traveler and American Indian Negotiator. He and Washington both kept journals of the journey.

Activity: Who to take?

People taken Reason needed

1. Indian interpreter: He needed an interpreter to translate his speech into American Indian languages.

2. 4 strong helpers: Washington needed helpers to control the pack horses that carried all the supplies, put up the tents, cook the food, and do other chores. They would have been very busy.

3. French Interpreter: He needed a translator to interpret with the French.

4. Guide and French Interpreter:

Not Needed

1. Carpenter: The did not need to build anything on the journey.

2. Farmer: A farmer would not have been much help on the journey.

3. Wash women: Washington has his men wash his clothes.

4. Cook: His men would have to cook there own force.

George Washington and his crew set out for Logstown.

November 26, 1753

George Washington met with 2 powerful Indian Chiefs to help with the journey to the French Fort.

Chief: description

1. Monacatoocha Oneida  knew the Americans Indians could not remain neutral.

2. Half King: A Seneca chief who tried to do what was best for his people as the French and British moved into the area.

Describe the American Indian Culture Tradition at important meetings.

It was traditional in American Indian culture important to exchange gifts at important meetings to show sincerity.

The Half King was upset at the French because:

1. A French officers had called his people names

2. They threatened to take the American Indian lands.

Washington hoped he could convince some of the Indians to join him on the journey to be guides, guards, & hunters.

Why did the chiefs need time? The chiefs needed time to prepare. They wanted to make sure their interests were represented to both the British and the French

Who finally joined Washington’s group? Three chiefs and one hunter.

December 11, 1753

French General Description

1. Legardeur De St. Pierre: Born in Canada, he wa a French Marine captain and commander of Ft. Le Boeuf. He only had one eye.

The commander needed time to translate & study the letter.

Washington’s two fears were confirmed

1. The French were preparing to build more forts

2. The French were going to take control over the disputed land in the Ohio River Valley

Explain the shift in foreign policy for the French in regards to the American Indians.

Legardeur De St. Pierre realized it was important to have good relationships with the American Indians living in the area. He began to fix the broken relationships with gifts and promises.

What was George Washington’s dilemma that was created with the British asked the Indians to stay? He was in a hurry to get back to Virginia, however he knew is was important for the chiefs to stay on the side of the British so he elected to stay.

Washington’s horses were weak! How did the French help the British? The French loaned Washington canoes to spare the horses from carrying all the baggages.

December 16, 1753

Human-Environment Interaction: Describe the 2 challenges the British faced with the canoes.

1. Several the canoe almost smashed against the rocks!

2. At times low water forced the passengers to walk in the creek pulling the canoes along.

December 23 – 25, 1753: Describe the setting and situation for Washington and his group at Venago? It was very cold, the horses were still very weak so the group had to walk instead of ride.

Activity: Washington in Indian Dress

Clothing Item Purpose

1. wool hat: knit hats made of wool were far more comfortable and practical for winter travel through the forest.

2.  Match coat: The match coat was a wool blanket wrap and made a garment to protect against the cold. Usually a pin was used to fasten the blanket below the neck. The match coats were a common trade item to the American Indians.

3. Mittens:knit wool mittens and wool gloves protected the hands from the cold.

4. Leggings: also called mitasses, were made of leather or trade wool. This simple article of clothing protected the lower legs from brush cuts and provided warmth.

December 26 – 27:

Washington and Gist decide to move ahead. Who do they met? American Indian Warrior (neither journal lists this warriors names or nation.)

Why did the Indian carry Washington’s pack? Washington was not used to travelling long distances.

What shocking thing does the Indian do? He suddenly turned shot at them and missed.

What did Washington and Gist decide to do with the Indian? Let him go.

What is the only thing Gist and Washington had to guide them? a compass they walked all night and all day

December 19, 1753

Because the river was not frozen. The built a raft with a hatchet.

Describe Washington’s close call crossing the river. Large ice chunks raced down the Allegheny River. The force of water and ice jerked Washington’s pole and threw him into the cold deep water.

Describe the decision based on the fact the river was too dangerous to cross. They spent the night on a small island in the middle of the river.

How do they finally get to the otherside? Overnight the river had frozen so they could walk to the other side.

December 30, 1753

Where do they stay? (Frazier’s a friendly British trader) cabin

Washington finally reached Williamsburg nearly 3 months after he left.

Governor Dinwiddle need to warn the British people about the extreme danger developing on the frontier.

How did Washington suddenly become famous?  His journal was published and read throughout the AMerican colonies and England.


At the Battle at Fort Necessity resulted in Washington having to surrender his army.

Describe the battle of Monongahela in 1755. The British lost and were forced to retreat. Washington hd 4 bullets shot through his clothing but was not harmed.

1758 Washington helped capture the important French Fort Duquesne, in the Ohio River Valley.