Visual Description | George Washington Statue

Horatio Greenough created this 12-ton marble statue of President George Washington. The statue serves as the landmark object on the second floor, west wing of the National Museum of American History. The statue depicts the figure of George Washington, seated in a thronelike chair, gazing sternly ahead. Carvings on the sides of the chair depict the Greek God Apollo and an infant Hercules. Further designs on the back of the chair feature small flanking figures of an American Indian and Christopher Columbus. The arms of the chair are topped with lions’ faces under which a columnar design of three vertical lines extends to the floor, ending in the lions’ paws.   

Washington is shown bare-chested and with his right arm and hand gesturing with an index finger pointing upwards. His hair is pulled back from his forehead in a ponytail with a roll of curls near his neck. He wears classically draped robes, a piece of which is draped around his right bicep. In Washington’s outstretched left hand his palm and forehand cradle a sheathed sword, hilt forward.