The early life and times of thomas jefferson

Monticello, Virginia American president, philosopher, and statesman The American philosopher and statesman Thomas Jefferson was the first secretary of state, the second vice president, and the third president of the United States. As president, Jefferson successfully negotiated, or bargained for the terms of, the Louisiana Purchase, which nearly doubled the country's size.

The early life and times of thomas jefferson

His mother, Jane Randolphwas from a wealthy family that claimed descent from the kings of Scotland and England.

Jon Meacham received the Pulitzer Prize for his biography of Andrew Jackson, American is also the author of the New York Times bestsellers Thomas Jefferson: The Art of Power, American Gospel, and Franklin and lausannecongress2018.comm, who teaches at Vanderbilt University and at The University of the South, is a fellow of the Society of American Historians. A biography of Thomas Jefferson, who despite his legendary intelligence and political savvy, could be ruthless, not to mention lawless, in his efforts to preserve his lausannecongress2018.comson operated on two levels, as his opposition to slavery as a slaveowner attests. But as Willard Sterne Randall argues, this duality is what made him so effective. Jefferson’s education began in from a school run by William Douglas, who was a Scottish minister. From the time he was nine, Jefferson became an avid learner of Greek, French and Latin. Thomas Jefferson’s father died in , making his son an heir to his huge land assets and a number of Martha Wayles Skelton.

His radical streak came from his dad. Peter Jefferson was not a part of the Virginia gentry. He was from a modest family, and had made his fortune as a farmer and surveyor.

The early life and times of thomas jefferson

Times could be rough back then, even for a wealthy Virginia family. Jefferson became the head of his family when his father passed away in ; he was just 14 years old.

50 Documents That Tell America’s Story

Luckily, a family friend stepped in to run the household until Jefferson could finish his education, but young Tom knew he would have to grow up quickly.

It seems like he fell in love with reading at about this time. In the midst of personal trouble, Jefferson did what countless youths had done before and since: Taking part in politics was what it meant to be a free citizen.

But—and this is crucial—taking part in politics was only one part of what it meant to be a free citizen. A free citizen had to take part in politics selflessly. And for that, he had to be un-coerced and independent. He had to be able to provide for his own food, run his own household, and dispose of his own time, all without being beholden to anyone else.

Life in public then, as a politician, was made possible by life in private. It was only because the free citizen led an independent private life that he could have a proper public life at all.

The ideal statesman, then? A self-supporting independent man who participated in politics only out of duty. The Roman general Cincinnatus provided the archetype. He loved his studies, and was reputed to be very serious as a youth, even a little bookish. After finishing his degree in just two years, he decided to stay on in Williamsburg to study some more.

It was among the happier times in his life. Jefferson was expected to finish his studies and come home to run the family estate, and he knew it. Jefferson did not disappoint. He finished his schooling in and promptly moved back home. He was elected to the Virginia House of Burgessesthe local legislature, the very next year.

He set up a law practice, tended to his affairs, and started looking for a wife. To any outside observer, it would have looked like Jefferson was becoming a traditional gentleman.Thomas Jefferson, one of the author of the Declaration of Independence and the third president of the United States, stuck to a consistent routine throughout his life.

Thomas Jefferson - Wikipedia

Learn more about Thomas Jefferson, draftsman of the U.S. Declaration of Independence and the nation's third president, on AUTOBIOGRAPHY by Thomas Jefferson Table of Contents. The Declaration of Independence The Articles of Confederation The Virginia Legislature Review and Reform of the Law.

A report by the Thomas Jefferson Foundation in , concluded there is a high probability that Thomas Jefferson was the father of Eston Hemings, and that he was likely the father of all six of Sally Hemings's children listed in Monticello records.).

By the time of his death in , the elder Jefferson owned 7, acres of land in western Virginia.

The early life and times of thomas jefferson

He had also made a name for himself as the commander of the local militia, a talented surveyor, and a country politician. His early death, when Thomas was fourteen, caused his teenage son to look to his teachers for fatherly advice and direction. Thomas Jefferson was a student of the Enlightenment, of human nature and of honorable behavior.

He applied this to his personal life and to the national & global challenges he .

SparkNotes: Thomas Jefferson: Early Life