SNEAK PEEK: A presidential library for America’s indispensable man, George Washington.
The Fred W. Smith National Library for the Study of George Washington opened at Mount Vernon on September 27. In the November 2013 issue, David Rubenstein shares why he chose to support this project:
In 1787, shortly after retiring from the presidency, in a letter to a friend, James McHenry, his former secretary of war, George Washington expressed a desire to build a library. “I have not houses yet to build, except one,” he wrote, “which I must erect for the accommodation and security of my military, civil and private papers, which are voluminous and may be interesting.” More than 200 years have passed and Washington finally has his wish.
On September 27, I traveled out to Mount Vernon for the opening of The Fred W. Smith National Library for the Study of George Washington. I supported this library because it places the first president in the spotlight in a powerful new way. In addition to safeguarding his original books and manuscripts, the library is also taking innovative approaches to educational outreach and leadership training; in this domain, Washington is an endless source of new material and a time-honored case study. After all, there is no American president who provides us a better example of selfless leadership and decisive action than our first president, who again and again put his own interests aside in order to answer the call of his country.
See the full op-ed below, and in the November 2013 issue, which hits newsstands Monday November 4.