What was the name of the first president of the United States?

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George Washington was the first president elected under the US Constitution in 1789, but some don't regard him as the first overall. They give that honor instead to John Hanson, who was the first president to be elected under the Constitution's predecessor, the Articles of Confederation, in 1781.

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George Washington was the first president elected under the US Constitution in 1789, but some don't regard him as the first overall. They give that honor instead to John Hanson, who was the first president to be elected under the Constitution's predecessor, the Articles of Confederation, in 1781.

John Hanson had none of the power of later presidents, however, and most see his role as merely ceremonial. For the most part, all he did was sign documents and preside over debates. A lot of what was achieved during his one year in charge, such as the introduction of the Treasury Department and introduction of the Secretary of State, seems to be attributed to Congress as a whole rather than anything he did personally.

When Washington came to power, article two of the Constitution, like for every President that came after him, gave him full executive power. For the first time in its history, the United States of America had an official head of state. So in that regard, Washington has to be seen as the first American president.

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