As a young boy of about six, George
became the owner of a hatchet. He was
very fond of this hatchet as many other kids of his age would. He enjoyed the hatchet so much in fact that
he began to cut and chop at almost any object in his path. George enjoyed going into his mother’s
garden and chopping her pea-sticks. One
day while in the garden George came upon the cherry-tree that happened to be
growing there. He swung the hatchet at
the tree and hit it so hard the tree fell to the ground. In the morning, George’s father went out to
the garden and saw the fallen cherry-tree.
This was one of his favorites, and so he went into the house intent on
finding out who had killed it. He asked
who had done it with warmth in order to put everyone at ease. He even said he would have not accepted 5
guineas for the tree but no one could tell him who did it. Shortly afterwards George arrived with his
hatchet. His father asked him if he
knew who killed the precious cherry-tree in the garden. George was stunned for a moment, but then
straightened himself up and confessed to killing the tree. He said, “I can’t tell a lie Pa; you know I
can’t tell a lie. I did cut it with my
hatchet.” Instead of being angry, his
father cried out for him to run into his arms.
He hugged George and told him he was glad he killed the tree for he had
paid him back a thousand fold for being so honest. Such an act was worth more than a thousand trees to George’s
father, even if those trees were blossoming with silver and gold.
George was brought up as an honest and truthful man. And these ideals have become in important for the citizens of the
United States. This story is a fitting
tribute to the man who was our first president and who could never tell a lie.