Washington is perhaps the only person other than Jesus who declined enormous
worldly power, in Washington's case by first refusing to become a military
dictator or king and then by voluntarily stepping aside as the leader of a
prosperous nation. His precedent was voluntarily followed for 140 years.
After retiring from the presidency in March 1797, Washington returned to Mount
Vernon with a profound sense of relief. He devoted much time to farming and, in
that year, constructed a 2,250 square foot (75-by-30 feet, 200 m²)
distillery, which was one of the largest in the new republic, housing five
copper stills, a boiler and 50 mash tubs, at the site of one of his unprofitable
farms. At its peak, two years later, the distillery produced 11,000 gallons of
corn and rye whiskey worth $7,500, and fruit brandy.
George Washington's distillery is a part of the American Whiskey