Thomas Jefferson’s Home, Monticello
A few years ago I took an internet course on the drafter of the Declaration of Independence Thomas Jefferson (1743-1825). He was born in Virginia with privilege and responsibility. As a young man, he studied the works of Isaac Newton, Francis Bacon, and John Locke, all men of the Enlightenment movement. He studied the rest of his life on many subjects.
Reason, Knowledge and Natural Rights were central
I was so happy to get a chance last summer to visit Monticello with my husband and his newly found family in Virginia. Without their help and hospitality, we would not have been able to go there. Should I get a second chance to come, I would like to see the University of Virginia founded by Jefferson.
The course, I took part in came from that university.
Thomas Jefferson was most proud of three things which are engraved on his obelisk tombstone in his family graveyard at Monticello in his own words:
Here was buried Thomas Jefferson, Author of the Declaration of American Independence, of the Statute of Virginia for religious freedom & Father of the University of Virginia
A part of the Monticello World Heritage Centre has a museum on the process of being freed from the British government and shows the part Jefferson played together with the other Founding Fathers.
In all these years since Thomas Jefferson lived his reputation has gone up and down. At the time of the fall of the Iron curtain, he had a come back like just after WWII as a role model for the Free World.
He loved his home in Monticello, and every detail was planned and thought about. He cultivated many species of vegetables and fruits in his garden and kept only the best.
The past is a forein country; They do things differently there
Quote from British writer L.P. Hartley (1895-1972) in his book “The Go-Between.” I mention this because the controversy of Thomas Jefferson had to do with him owning slaves. He knew that slavery was a huge problem and meant that it had to be solved by future generations. Due to financial difficulties, only a few slaves got their freedom at his death.
From a Twitter post yesterday on the same subject
Jefferson couldn’t live without books. His boyhood home burnt in 1770 where he lost many books. At Monticello, Thomas Jefferson collected a large number of books which he later donated or sold for any price set by Congress, after the British had burnt the Congress Library in 1814. Once again he began a new book collection to fill up the shelves at Monticello.