Sunday, April 19, 2009

Charlottesville Confidential

Jefferson's Monticello--one of America's most beautiful and fascinating presidential estates.
(Click image to enlarge.)

This road trip started with a visit to Thomas Jefferson's home in Charlottesville, Virginia. Monticello--Italian for little mountain--is situated in the heart of the Shenandoah Valley and constitutes 5,000 acres of lush Virginia countryside. It was here that one of the most brilliant minds in American history lived and worked as a farmer, statesman, and patriot.

To learn more about Jefferson and Monticello, go here, here, and here.

Three of my favorites quotes by or about Jefferson:

"I have sworn upon the altar of God eternal hostility against every form of tyranny over the mind of man." - Thomas Jefferson, 1800 in a private letter discussing party conflict

"I think this is the most extraordinary collection of talent, of human knowledge, that has ever been gathered together at the White House, with the possible exception of when Thomas Jefferson dined alone." – John F. Kennedy, Remarks at dinner honoring Nobel Prize winners of the Western Hemisphere, April 29, 1962

And, finally, on his gravesite, the epitaph Jefferson wrote for himself:

Here was buried Thomas Jefferson
Author of the Declaration of American Independence
Of the Statute of Virginia for Religious Freedom
And Father of the University of Virginia

Jefferson died on July 4, 1826--the 50th anniversary of the signing of the Declaration of Independence. His fellow patriot and co-signer, John Adams, died four hours later in Quincy, Massachusetts. Jefferson was 83. Adams was 90.

Just a few more pictures from Monticello.

Tomorrow: One of America's castles...

Photo copyright: Janet Kincaid, 04/09


NG said...

NICE pics of Monticello. Jefferson is a personal hero of mine in spite... or perhaps, because of... the many contradictions in his character. I love this place.

marley said...

Interesting first post from your trip. Strange how they both died on the 50th anniversary...

Love the colourful flower photos, especially the purple poppy.

D.C. Confidential / Janet Kincaid said...

NG: Thanks! Monticello is one of my favorite places.

Marley: The death of Jefferson and Adams on the same day and within hours of each other is indeed odd.

I liked the poppies, too. Be sure to check out Monday's entry. I have tulips!

Cele said...

We don't have kewl places like that. I want to go. Love the pictures, but I really want one of those purple poppies for my garden. Beautimous.

Brian said...

TJ is one of my favorite historical chacters in all Christen-dom! And Monticello is one of those places where I bractically overflow with a sense of nationalism and historical awe. I love the Kennedy quote!

Maya said...

Your flower shots are stunning! I sure wish I could have met Jefferson in person. What a fascinating man!

D.C. Confidential / Janet Kincaid said...

Cele: The East Coast is riddled with places like this. You can't swing a dead cat in these parts without hitting some historical something or other.

Brian: Thomas Jefferson is definitely someone to admire!

Maya: Thanks! Meeting Jefferson would be very cool! Only problem is, I don't know what I'd ask him for fear of feeling like I was wasting his time and brain cells with my pittance of an intellect.