Lawrence Washington (1718 – 1752) was a Colonial British planter, slave-owner, and politician. He was also a Master Templar of the British Rite of the Templar Order, operating in the Northern American colonies, and the half-brother of George Washington.
Lawrence Washington was born in Virginia in 1718 to Augustine Washington and Jane Butler. In 1729, Lawrence and his younger brother, Augustine, Jr., were taken to England by their father and educated at the Appleby Grammar School. During this time, Lawrence was recruited into the Templar Order by Reginald Birch, Grand Master of the British Templars.
Search for the Grand Temple
In 1738, Lawrence returned to Virginia after having been named Master Templar of the Northern colonies by Birch. He received a letter from the Grand Master, in which he revealed that he had obtained the journal of the Assassin Edward Kenway. The journal suggested that the First Civilization Grand Temple was located somewhere in the New World.
Although he was unsure of its contents, Birch made the Temple the Order's highest priority. As the Grand Master's eyes and ears in the colonies, Lawrence was tasked with locating the Grand Temple as well as any Precursor relics in the region.
At the same time, Lawrence oversaw his father's tobacco plantation at the Potomac River. He also acted as a mentor of sorts to his younger half-brother, George. After the death of their father, George looked up to Lawrence as a role model, and the two loved each other dearly.
In 1739, the British Parliament created an infantry regiment for the American colonies to be used in the West Indies against Spain in what became known as the War of Jenkins' Ear. Arriving in Jamaica in 1741, Lawrence saw action in expeditions against Cartagena, New Granada, Cuba and Panama.
During these conflicts, many soldiers died of tropical diseases. Because he had arrived in the region early, Lawrence was able survive these fevers. In late 1742, Lawrence returned to Virginia and became a militia commander at the rank of Major.
Master Templar and other activities
- "Master Washington, I am less than pleased with paltry results coming from the colonies. I have other agents around the globe searching tirelessly for Pieces of Eden and you and your motley crew are busy building a postal service. What is more, I understand that an Assassin Brotherhood has taken root somewhere outside of New York. This simply will not do."
- ―Birch in his letter to Lawrence, 1750.[src]-[m]
After inheriting his father's plantation, Lawrence renamed it Mount Vernon, in honor of his commanding officer in the Royal Navy, Vice Admiral Edward Vernon. In 1743, he married Anne Fairfax, the eldest daughter of Colonel William Fairfax. The Colonel would go on to exert a great deal of influence on George.
Three years later, Lawrence wrote to his subordinate, Christopher Gist. In his letter, he addressed Gist on the Colonial Templars' need for one or a series of companies to double as a communications network. Lawrence noted that William Johnson had recently been appointed Colonel of the Warriors of the Six Nations, was well-established and held good relations with the Kanien'kehá:ka. He suggested to Gist that they start making friendly appeals to Johnson. Lawrence also mentioned that he planned on influencing his in-laws to create a trading company closer to his base of operations.
Lawrence's plans came to fruition, and he successfully recruited Johnson into the Templar Order. Together, they worked to build an infrastructure for the Order in the colonies. In 1747, Lawrence began working with his father-in-law and other prominent businessmen, and created the Ohio Company with the intent of opening trade to the interior of the American continent. Around this period, he hired Samuel Smith as the treasurer of one his businesses, and the Colonial Templars by extension.
In 1750, Lawrence received another letter from Birch, who was highly displeased with the former's lack of progress in discovering Precursor artifacts and sites, as well as the founding of a new Colonial Brotherhood of Assassins near New York. Claiming that Lawrence was "busy building a postal service", Birch transferred his agent, George Monro, to the colonies in order to assist him in his mission. Although Monro would serve as Lawrence's subordinate, Birch claimed that the former was "[his] better in every way".
That year, through the Ohio Company, Lawrence tasked Gist with exploring the lands west of the colonies and forming relations with the native tribes there in order to secure alliances and commerical lanes for the Templars.
Stealing the artifacts
- "By the time you receive this, I will already be on my way back to Virginia. Prepare yourself. Our true work begins now. Upon my return, we’ll be able to share the glad news with the Grand Master in London. Perhaps my leadership in the colonies will finally be recognized."
- ―Lawrence in his letter to Gist, 1751.[src]-[m]
Around this time, Lawrence was diagnosed with tuberculosis. In an attempt to heal himself, he traveled to Barbados with George in 1751. Knowing Saint-Domingue was the home of another Brotherhood chapter, he sought to claim any Pieces of Eden in their possession. As George caught a minor case of smallpox, Lawrence was granted an opportunity to travel to Port-au-Prince while he recovered. He was relieved that George would survive, and also hoped to spare his brother from any Templar business.
Upon arriving, he tracked down the Assassins and learned that they were lead by a one-armed Maroon named François Mackandal, whose demeanor disgusted him. Lawrence tracked Mackandal's man Vendredi to the entrance of a cave. He planned to ambush Vendredi as the latter left the cave, but an earthquake struck after the Assassin had unintentionally disturbed Precursor technology in the cave.
Vendredi's legs were crushed beneath the debris as he attempted to escape, and Lawrence offered to free the Assassin in exchange for Mackandal's location. Vendredi complied, although Lawrence slit his throat afterwards. While Lawrence wished to have explored the cave, the entrance was obliterated.
Under the cover of the earthquake, Lawrence infiltrated Mackandal's camp, and stole two Pieces of Eden in his possession; the Precursor box and manuscript. Returning to George in Barbados, Lawrence wrote to Gist and relayed the events to him. The Master Templar expressed to his subordinate that their true work was about to begin, and that Birch would perhaps finally recognize his leadership in the colonies upon learning of the events in Port-au-Prince.
While sailing back to Virginia, Lawrence was pursued by the legendary Assassin Adéwalé. The Assassin eventually lost track of him, however. Back in the Thirteen Colonies, Lawrence entrusted the Precursor box and manuscript to his subordinates Smith and James Wardrop, respectively.
- Lawrence: "You are too late, Assassin."
- Shay: "It's never too late to ruin Templars plans, Master Washington."
- Lawrence: "Ah, ah... but my plans are already in motion. Even leading you here... has given my allies time to escape. Thank you... for making my end a quick one."
- Shay: "And thank you for revealing your master plan, you scheming snake."
- —Shay speaking with Lawrence during the latter's final moments, 1752.[src]-[m]
By July 1752, Lawrence had retired to Mount Vernon, dying of tuberculosis. Around this time, a prototype air rifle was sent to him. The Colonial Assassin Mentor Achilles Davenport charged Shay Cormac with interrogating Lawrence about the stolen artifacts and assassinating him. He tailed the air rifle shipment to Mount Vernon, and stole the weapon.
While Shay watched from nearby at Lawrence's garden party, the latter assured George that he was in fine condition. As Jack Weeks, Smith and Wardrop approached, he bid George fetch a bottle of wine for them. With George away, Lawrence requested that his fellow Templars keep his younger brother out of Templar business. He then inquired on their progress in discovering the purpose of the artifacts, to which Smith and Wardrop replied that they were fully occupied with doing so.
After sending his fellow Templars away, Lawrence walked the grounds of his mansion and spoke to the guests. Shay hid in the crowd and assassinated the Templar with his Hidden Blade. In his dying moments, Lawrence claimed that Shay was too late, his own death having given his men time to escape. Thanking the Assassin for giving him a quick death, Lawrence passed away.
As Shay escaped, he told his fellow Assassin Liam O'Brien of his displeasure in killing the already dying Lawrence, and his suspicion that his death had little impact on the Templars. Liam claimed that Lawrence would simply have wanted him to believe so. Following the death of his brother, a grief-stricken George inherited Mount Vernon.
Behind the scenes
- In 2015, his name was on a list of known British Templars used by the Templar Isabelle Ardant.
- It is possible to use Washington as a human shield, though doing so will cause desynchronization.
- Historically, Lawrence Washington died of tuberculosis at his Mount Vernon home in July 1752.
- Assassin's Creed III (mentioned in Database entry only)
- George Washington's notebook (mentioned only)
- Assassin's Creed: Rogue (first appearance)
- Assassin's Creed: Syndicate (mentioned only)
- Assassin's Creed: Rogue – Database: Lawrence Washington
- Assassin's Creed: Rogue – War Letters: Lawrence of America
- Assassin's Creed: Rogue – War Letters: Front Company
- Assassin's Creed: Rogue – Database: William Johnson (Rogue)
- Assassin's Creed: Rogue – Database: Samuel Smith
- George Washington's notebook
- Assassin's Creed: Rogue – War Letters: Monro
- Assassin's Creed: Rogue
- Assassin's Creed: Rogue – War Letters: Family Vacation
- Assassin's Creed: Rogue – Lessons and Revelations
- Assassin's Creed: Rogue – Database: James Wardrop
- Assassin's Creed: Rogue – By Invitation Only
- Assassin's Creed III – Database: George Washington