George Mason The Man

George Mason, for whom our university is named, was one of the greatest of the founding fathers of the United States. Mason drafted the Virginia Declaration of Rights, which became a model for the first 10 amendments to the U.S. Constitution, known as the Bill of Rights.



Perhaps the most well-known landmark on the Fairfax Campus, the George Mason Bronze is located between the Johnson Center and the Performing Arts Building. Created by internationally known artist Wendy M. Ross, it is the first three-dimensional portrait of George Mason in the United States.

Seven feet tall, the statue portrays the great statesman presenting his handwritten first draft of the Virginia Declaration of Rights.

The writing table on Mason's right replicates the original, which can be found in the study at Gunston Hall, his home in Fairfax County, Virginia. The three books on the table—works by Hume, Locke, and Rousseau—depict the sources of his thoughts on individual liberty.

The statue is a constant reminder of the ideals most important to both the man and the university: freedom and learning.

Legend has it that rubbing George Mason's toe before an exam will give students good luck!

  • The Visitor’s Center—offers a brief history of George Mason plus other information about visiting the university, landmarks, and useful information.
  • The Electronic Documentary History—in the Special Collections Archive of University Libraries offers scanned versions of actual historic documents whose originals are to be found in various locations around the state of Virginia.
  • Gunston Hall Plantation—is the web site of George Mason’s plantation estate, Gunston Hall, a 550-acre National Historic Landmark in southern Fairfax County, Virginia.

RELATED LINKS: Visitors Center Campus Map Admissions Campus Visits