Who is Washington’s Heir Today? The results aren’t what you would expect.


There is a myth that when Washington became president, he first declined an offer to become the first King of America as “King George I”. This isn’t actually true; Washington never actually considered the idea, and never would have accepted. But… what if he had?

It’s impossible to know who would be king of America today if Washington had declared a monarchy, as history would have gone in a vastly different direction. But what if America decided to become a constitutional monarchy today, and this was supported by the people? They would still have a president, and branches of government, but the king would be a figurehead who represented America.

If we followed the senior line of George Washington’s family, who would hold that honored title?

Even that isn’t clear. Why? Well, because Washington himself never had any children.

Let us say that Washington was a king, or we recognized him as one in the past. He would have ascended the “throne” in 1783, when America was recognized as independent, and “ruled” until 1799, marking a 16-year-long reign. But then, he would be left with no children, so to find the heir today, we would need to go back a generation.

“George I” was the third of seven children of Augustine Washington, a plantation owner (as George Washington himself was originally), and to trace the most senior line, we would start with his oldest sibling. That would be his older brother Lawrence Washington – but by 1799, he was long dead, having died of tuberculosis back in 1752. And like George Washington, Lawrence left no surviving children.

At that point, we would go to the next child of Augustine – George’s other older brother Augustine Jr. Like Lawrence, Augustine Jr. had passed away (in 1762), but unlike Lawrence, he left children of his own. One child, that is – a son, William.

Unlike his relatives, William (George’s nephew) was alive by 1799. So he would be regarded as “William I”, and the second king of America. Like the previous “king”, William was also a plantation owner, and would “reign” for eleven years, until 1810. From this point, it will be much easier to find George Washington’s heir.

William was succeeded by his eldest son, Bushrod Washington, who would have ended up in charge for 21 years – all the way until 1831.

His descent would pass from father to son in this way:

Bushrod I (“reigned” 1810-1831)

Spotswood I (“reigned” 1831-1865) (He would have been the heir during the American Civil War)

Bushrod II (“reigned” 1865-1918) (He would have been the heir during World War I)

At this point, Bushrod II would not have any sons, but he did have a daughter, Estella. She and her husband, John Withers, would have become the new “leaders” as John I and Estella I. They would “rule” together until 1927, when John died after 9 years of reign, and Estella would then rule alone until her death in 1931.

However, like so many others, they would leave no children… which means it will be hard to find the next heir.

Estella had no siblings, but her father Bushrod II did. The next-oldest brother after him was named James, but little is known about him, unfortunately, and he predeceased Estella. He did, however, leave a son named Lee – who would “reign” as “King Lee I” until he passed away 1969 after 38 years. Lee would have been the heir to Washington during the time of the largest war in history, World War II. Unfortunately, very little is known about Lee Washington.

Lee, like Bushrod II, left a daughter to succeed him, named Odelle. Interestingly, she was married to a man (Ernest Hanson) who served as an army lieutenant during World War II, and was stationed on the island of Oahu when the attack on Pearl Harbor happened (Pearl Harbor is on the island of Oahu). Fortunately, he survived, and they would have been joint “rulers” from 1969 until 1988, when “Ernest I” died; Odelle (about whom little is known) would then live until the year 2000.

We have now almost reached the end of the family line.

Ernest and Odelle, like their “predecessors”, left a daughter to succeed them: Brynda, who at the time of Odelle’s death was already 62 years old. Brynda and her husband, Michael Kelly, ascended to the position of heir in 2000, and they have held it ever since. Like most members of the family, there is not much information on them. However, it is still interesting to know that if America ever became a monarchy, and people wanted to know who Washington’s heir was… we would have a King Michael I and Queen Brynda I.

So, surprisingly, the heir of George Washington was hard to track down. Why is this? Apparently, Washington did not give away all of his property and rights to his direct, senior heir. His house, in fact, went to a different brother of his, and because of this, Washington’s heirs today are relatively obscure. But maybe that will change soon…

(However, there is almost no chance of this happening.)

Edit: Can’t believe this got over 800 views, thanks for reading!