On the evening of December 12, 1799, George Washington, who at that time was 67 years old and happily retired from public life, came down with a minor cold and sore throat.
The next day he lost his voice and began having trouble breathing.
On the morning of December 14, his wife Martha sent word to several doctors asking them to come to the Washington’s estate at Mount Vernon.
Three different doctors arrived, and each of them performed a ‘bloodletting’ to treat George Washington.
Bloodletting was a popular treatment at the time in which a physician attempted to ‘drain’ sickness from the body by deliberately bleeding the patient.
But when Washington’s condition failed to improve, the doctors doubled down on the bloodletting. They were certain that their approach was the correct one.
Modern historians estimate that doctors removed FORTY PERCENT of Washington’s total blood supply that day.
In addition, one doctor also gave Washington an enema, and another gave Washington a potent mixture to induce vomiting.
So not only did Washington lose an incredible amount of blood, he was also extremely dehydrated.
Big shocker— his condition worsened further, and finally that evening— December 14, 1799— George Washington passed away.
We’ll never know what might have happened if Old George had just laid in bed and drank tea.