Volume 1: 1748 to Aug. 1755

The first volume of the Colonial Series, spanning the years 1748 to August 1755, reveals much about the young Washington: his relationships with friends and family, his efforts to establish himself as a surveyor, and his growing ambition for a military career in the face of the threat to his colony from French encroachment on the frontier.

The correspondence in this volume touches briefly on Washington’s journey to Fort Le Boeuf carrying a letter from Governor Dinwiddie to the French commandant and covers in detail his first command as colonel of the newly formed Virginia Regiment. The documents concerning the ill-fated Fort Necessity campaign and Washington’s service as a volunteer aide to Edward Braddock not only picture the introductory phase of the colony’s conflict with the French but reveal Washington’s personal and military development from a brash young officer to an increasingly mature soldier.

W.W. Abbot, ed., The Papers of George Washington: Colonial Series volume 1, 1748 – August 1755. Charlottesville and London: University Press of Virginia, 1983.

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