Martha Washington was born as Martha Dandridge was born on June 2, 1731. Her father was a very wealthy Virginia plantation owner. She was the oldest of 8 children. When Martha tuned 18, her parents married her off to not George Washington, but to Daniel Parke Custis, who was an unbelievable 20 years older than young Martha. They moved to, the ironically named, White House Plantation in Virginia and had 4 children. However, Daniel Custis died in 1757 and left Martha a very, very wealthy widow. She also uncommonly had complete control over the inheritance (which a lot of women did not have back then) as well as complete rights over her children
This is where General George Washington enters the picture. He courted her, visiting her at the plantation, and the two got married on January 6, 1759. The Washington’s honeymooned at the White House Plantation before moving into Mount Vernon, George Washington’s estate. They did not have any children together. But, they did raise Martha’s two remaining children, both of whom also died at a young age. Martha and George seemed to have a very solid marriage, nonetheless. She spent the historic winter at Valley Forge with George when he was serving as the Commander in Chief of the Continental Army. There, Martha played a very important role in boosting the morale of the young soldiers.
The funny thing is that Martha was opposed to George Washington running as the first president of the United States. They apparently had a very comfortable life together that she did not want to be disturbed. She didn’t even attend the inauguration! Martha and George Washington did make a large impact on the formation of our government, even if she was opposed to the idea at first.