Socially and politically well connected, Lawrence Washington (1718-1752) was destined for greatness, but a lingering illness contracted while serving with the British in the Caribbean cut short his promising life. The loss was deeply felt by his younger half-brother, George Washington, to whom Lawrence had served as affectionate mentor after their father died in 1743. Through Lawrence, George was introduced into some of Virginia's finest families, thereby enabling him to learn and perfect his social graces as well as further his career as surveyor. In 1761, George inherited Mount Vernon from Lawrence's widow. He placed his half-brother's portrait in his private chamber in the Mansion, his Study - a fitting tribute to the man who helped make him who he was.
Purchase, 1936 [W-126]