President George Washington was said to have cut down a cherry tree, however this story is believed to be a myth. According to the story, Washington's father found his cherry tree had been cut down and the six-year old Washington confessed to the deed stating, "I cannot tell a lie."
The legend of the cherry tree first appeared in a biography written in 1804 about Washington by Mason Locke Weems. His version stated that Washington banged on the tree with a hatchet and damaged it. This differs from the current version in which Washington chops the tree down. Weems was a preacher, so it is believed that the story was included as a way to moralize his readers.