The Forensic Georges

Once a year Mount Vernon flies in a few good experts to take care of their three forensic wax figures of George Washington.

How Forensic Anthropology, Art, and Historical Research Created the “Real” George Washington

Three wax statues of George Washington at ages 19, 45 and 57 were created based on the research of a forensic anthropoligist working with teams of art historians and computer modeling specialists. They studied paintings, statues and a life mask casting that had been done during Washington’s lifetime, plus things like his dentures, his spectacles, and locks of his hair. The one thing they did not do was disturb his remains. The wax statues are considered the most accurate representations of what our first President actually looked like in existence.

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Filed under Andrew Breitbart, George Washington

7 responses to “The Forensic Georges

  1. Ting

    Wow! Did you just happen to notice the resemblance when you were studying about George Washington? Amazing! And the story is fascinating as well. I have not been to Mount Vernon in many, many years, which is inexcusable because it is only about 2 hours north of me. I just never think to head in that direction for leisure. I am oriented east or west in my natural inclinations: beach or mountains! I am waiting now for Auntie Lib’s visit to D.C. so I can meet her for lunch at Mount Vernon. The rest of ya’ll come, too!


    • chrissythehyphenated

      There is a page at the end of To Try Men’s Souls that advertises Mount Vernon. It’s illustrated with a pencil sketch of the Revolutionary War wax model. It just shouted Andrew Breitbart at me, so I went snooping around and found the rest.

      From other angles and in other photos, there doesn’t appear to be any resemblance, but I’ve noticed that elsewhere, esp with my nieces, nephews and grandkids, that the resemblance to a particular relative will be really strong from one angle and not apparent at all from another.

      I saw an old home movie of my father, from before I was born. I’d never seen any resemblance between him and two of my brothers, but in this movie, he moved a certain way, tilted his head, and flashed a quirky smile … my brothers both do the exact same thing!

      I think genes move in packets or clusters. And they express in funny ways. Like Mama Buzz does not have my hands, but Baby Buzz does!


      • I’ve noticed stuff like that too, Chrissy. My kids inherited a lot of noticeable proclivities, aptitudes, preferences, and weaknesses from their father and me, but they also have some quirky qualities, abilities, and talents that we know they didn’t get from either of us. I guess some things skip a generation or two. If any of my kids ever get around to reproducing, it will be interesting (and possibly a little scary) to see what latent qualities and quirks come out in the next generation.


        • chrissythehyphenated

          I think some of these things can lurk for many generations. I have an old friend who has my light skin/brunette coloring, as does everyone in her family. She married the same. Their daughter is a genuine, keep her out of the sun CARROT TOP. That coloring is recessive, so it had to have been passed down on both sides for a long time, because nobody on either side knew of any red heads in the family tree.


  2. The resemblance is certainly remarkable. Almost spooky.


  3. Ting

    I am trying to remember the name of the home where George Washington was born. I remember my Dad taking me there when I was a child. It is on a river – the Potomac, I think. I think it may also have been a project to restore it for the Garden Club of Virginia. That is a neat thing about Virginia – everywhere you turn there is some historic building or another where a President or a great Patriot lived or worked.

    Just about 3 miles down the road from me there is a plantation on the James River called Tuckahoe. Some friends of mine live there now and open it up for tours and weddings and things. They live in the basement and have kept the upper floors in the style of the colonial era, when Thomas Jefferson lived there for several years and went to school there as a boy. There are lots of places like that around Richmond.