Thomas JeffersonThird President of the United States of America.
Thomas Jefferson (1743-1826) was the third president of the United States and a
creator of the Declaration of Independence. Thomas Jefferson was a philosopher,
politician, scientist, architect, inventor, musician, and writer. Thomas Jefferson was also
one of the smartest leaders in history.
His father was named Peter Jefferson, a very rich Farmer from Virginia. Thomas’s
Mother, Jane Randolph Jefferson, was part of the Randolph family. The Randolph Family
was a big part of Virginia history, and also very rich also. Peter and Jane Jefferson moved
to Goochland county, because Peter had just gotten 400 acres of land there.
Thomas Jefferson was born in the log cabin in which the family lived. Thomas
Jefferson was the third child out of four brother and six sisters. Two years after Thomas
was born, William Randolph, a cousin of Mrs. Jefferson and a close friend of the family,
died. His will requested that Peter Jefferson move to his estate, take care of the house and
land, and make sure Randolph’s four children get educated. The Jefferson’s remained at
Randolph’s estate for seven years. The estate was called Shadwell.
Thomas Jefferson was quite the little intelligent boy. At age nine, Thomas
Jefferson Started Latin, Greek, and French Studies at a boarding school. Thomas liked to
Horse back ride, Canoe, Hunt, and fish. When Thomas was fourteen years old, his father
passed away. Thomas Jefferson was the oldest son, so Thomas had to take care of the
family. Jefferson was a tall, slender boy with sandy reddish hair and fair skin that freckled
and sunburned easily. A serious student, Thomas also enjoyed the lighter aspects of the
education of a Virginia gentleman. Jefferson learned to dance and play the violin.
Weekends and holidays Thomas spent either at Shadwell entertaining guests or at his
After two years at William and Mary (A College in Virginia’s capital city),
Jefferson left to study law. Thomas still studied French, Italian, and English history and
literature. In 1767, Jefferson was chosen to the practice of law in Virginia. Jefferson’s
main source of income was his land. That’s because most lawyers didn’t make enough
money back then.
On New Year’s Day, 1772, Jefferson married Martha Wayles Skelton, a
24-year-old widow. Patty (That’s Jefferson called her) shared her husband’s love of music
and played the harpsichord and piano. The marriage was happy, except Mrs. Jefferson’s ill
health. Of their six children, only two, both of them girls, lived to maturity. Martha
Jefferson died in 1782. The death of his wife had a profound effect on Jefferson and
probably influenced his return to politics, which Thomas Jefferson had considered leaving.
On June 21, 1775, Jefferson took his seat in Congress. The following summer,
Jefferson sat in Congress as an elected delegate, not as an alternate. It was at this session
that Thomas Jefferson wrote his most famous document, the Declaration of
On July 4, 1776, the Declaration of Independence was formally adopted. The
connections with America with Great Britain were broken. Within a few days the
declaration was being read to people throughout the colonies, and it was received with
Jefferson managed to spend considerable time with his family. Thomas took up
building projects at Monticello and continued to develop his land. Jefferson was a
philosopher a architect, and an inventor. Thomas invented the dumbwaiter, a swivel chair,
a lamp-heater, and an improved plow.
In May, 1784, Congress appointed Jefferson a diplomat. Jefferson was to go to
France. There Thomas Jefferson was to help the other ministers, Benjamin Franklin and
John Adams, in arranging commercial treaties with various European