Western History & Genealogy Blog

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Happy Birthday George Washington

So, when is George Washington's birthday?

George was born 11 February 1731 in what is now Westmoreland Co., Virginia. But isn't his birthday on 22 February? Yes, and no are the answers.  When he was born the British world was still using the Julian calendar and had fallen behind the Gregorian calendar by eleven days.

In 1752 the British world including the colonial world of which Virginia was a part began using the new calendar. To make a long story short eleven days were dropped and things moved forward, thus George's birthday moved from the 11th to the 22nd.  Well... yes... according to the new calendar.  But like many others George Washington continued to celebrate his birthday as the 11th of February. 

The calendar change is why dates before 1752 may carry annotations such as o.s. for old style or n.s. for new style. Change can be hard to accept even for a fellow like George Washington.

The real question may be how many cakes did he get?



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