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 • Woodbridge
 • Prince William County
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Mason Locke Weems
Birth: Oct. 11, 1759
Anne Arundel County
Maryland, USA
Death: May 23, 1825
Beaufort
Beaufort County
South Carolina, USA

Author. Known as Parson Weems, he was an itinerant evangelist and bookseller. His largely fictional "History of the Life, Death, Virtues and Exploits of George Washington" (1800) was immensely popular in its day. For its fifth edition (1806) Weems introduced the famous story of young Washington chopping down a cherry tree and then confessing with the words, "I cannot tell a lie, I did it with my little hatchet". This invented anecdote has survived as a folkloric example of the Founding Father's integrity. Weems was born in Maryland. He studied for the ministry in England and was ordained by the Archbishop of Canterbury in 1784. After serving as rector of two Maryland churches he became a full-time travelling bookseller in 1793. Weems followed the success of his Washington book with equally dubious "biographies" of Francis Marion (1809), Benjamin Franklin (1818), and William Penn (1822), and he also wrote such moral tracts as "God's Revenge Against Murder" (1807) and "The Drunkard's Looking Glass" (1812). He died during a bookselling tour of Beaufort, South Carolina, and was later buried at his home in Bel Air, Virginia. Weems' house still exists, but the exact location of his gravesite is no longer known. (bio by: Bobb Edwards) 
 
Family links: 
 Parents:
  David Hamilton Weems (1706 - 1779)
 
 Spouse:
  Frances Ewell Weems (1775 - 1843)
 
 Sibling:
  David Weems (1751 - 1820)*
  Mason Locke Weems (1759 - 1825)
 
*Calculated relationship
 
Burial:
Bel Air Plantation Cemetery
Woodbridge
Prince William County
Virginia, USA
 
Maintained by: Find A Grave
Originally Created by: Bobb Edwards
Record added: Apr 08, 2006
Find A Grave Memorial# 13888765
Mason Locke Weems
Added by: Bobb Edwards
 
Mason Locke Weems
Added by: John Evans
 
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I light a candle for Mason Locke Weems ...
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 Added: Jan. 21, 2012

- L Weems-Hyatt
 Added: Oct. 25, 2011

- lisa greenman
 Added: May. 23, 2010
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