Saturday, December 03, 2011

Monticello

Before I get to Monticello, this giant oak tree is from Ash-Lawn Highland, which was the home of James Monroe. Unlike Jefferson and Madison, Monroe did not die in debt, and you can tell by his house. It was a nice old house by today's standards, so it would pretty nice back then, but nothing compared with Monticello or Montpelier. So we don't even have a picture of the house because that's not what impressed us, just this big tree that would have been there when Monroe lived there.

Final post from our trip clear back in October, but I just had make sure to include Monticello, the home of Thomas Jefferson. I love how you get a sense of the personalities of the presidents when you visit their homes. Thomas Jefferson was always on the lookout for the latest and greatest so there are a lot of quirky little things about his home, like having a lot of the auxiliary buildings like the ice house and kitchen tucked halfway beneath the home so you can't see it from the front and having a dumbwaiter just for wine. His front entry room was a huge entry room full of artifacts that Lewis and Clark brought back and his house is full of French inspired items because he loved the French.
Unfortunately the day we were there it was pouring, but it did clear up a little and we were able to walk around the gardens after the tour of the inside of the house. You might recognize this view of the back of Monticello from the U.S. nickel.
Beautiful purple flowers.
And a beautiful view.Jefferson's grave.

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