Martha Saxton - The Widow Washington: The Life of Mary Washington

Upcoming Event
Sunday, June 30, 2019 - 5:00pm to 6:00pm

In this long-overdue life of Mary Ball Washington (1708-1789)—the first to draw on archival records—Saxton sets the record straight about the founding father’s mother. While Washington’s biographers have generally portrayed Mary as a trial to George, Saxton views her not in relation to her famous son, but as a woman responding to the various economic and social demands of her time. Mary was the daughter of a wealthy planter and formerly indentured servant but was orphaned at twelve. Ten years later she married a member of Virginia’s land- and slave-holding gentry and had five children. When her husband died in 1743, she flouted conventions by not remarrying; instead, she struggled to manage the estate herself and raise her family within the colony’s elite. Independent, pious, and hard-working, Mary had a strong influence on her son, and through him, on the nation.


5015 Connecticut Ave NW
Washington, DC 20008
Non Fiction
The Widow Washington: The Life of Mary Washington Cover Image
ISBN: 9780809097012
Availability: Not On Our Shelves—Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Farrar, Straus and Giroux - June 11th, 2019

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