George Washington was an avid hunter who bred and kept many dogs throughout his lifetime. He also had a knack for original dog names: Taster, Tipler, Forester, Vulcan, Madame Moose, Searcher, and last but not least, my favorite -- Sweet Lips. I was searching for an image of Sweet Lips and the best I could find was this anonymous etching of Washington with one of his hunting dogs. Along with it was this incredible story about our first president and his character. I think it's way better than the Cherry Tree tale...
Washington's affection for dogs is vividly illustrated in an incident that occurred during the Revolutionary War. It was when American forces were trying to contain British General William Howe's troops, who had occupied Philadelphia. During the Battle of Germantown, which was not going well for the Americans, Washington was encamped was encamped at Pennibecker's Mill.
On October 6, 1977, a little terrier was seen wandering the area between the American and British lines. It turns out that General Howe's little terrier had somehow gotten loose and had become lost on the battlefield. The dog was identified from its collar, and brought to Washington. His officers suggested that he might want to keep the dog as a sort of trophy which might weaken the morale of the British general.
Instead he took the dog into his tent, fed him and had him brushed and cleaned. Then, to the surprise of everyone, Washington ordered a cease fire. The shooting stopped and soldiers on both sides watched as one of Washington's aides formally returned a little dog to the British commander under a flag of truce.
Happy Presidents Day!