Wife: Martha Wayles Skelton (1748-1782), on January
Kids: Martha Washington Jefferson (1772-1836);
Jane Randolph Jefferson
(1774-75); infant son (1777); Mary Jefferson (1778-1804);
Jefferson (1780-81); Lucy Elizabeth Jefferson (1782-85)
Pets: mockingbird; two bear cubs, a gift from
Lewis and Clark
Bio: Thomas Jefferson (1743-1826), was the third
President Of The United States. On April 13, 1743, he
was born in Albemarle County, Virginia to a highly respected
and prominent family in the community. Thomas Jefferson
was well educated in small private schools. He attended
the College of William and Mary where he excelled in
law studies, therefore becoming a successful lawyer.
On Jan. 1, 1772, he married Martha Wayles Skelton, and
received the famous Monticello Estate from her father.
Jefferson stood for freedom from the start. As a member
of the Continental Congress (1775-1776), Jefferson was
chosen in 1776 to draft the Declaration of Independence,
which proclaims that all men are equal in rights, regardless
of birth, wealth, or status, and that government is
the servant, not the master, of human beings. In 1796,
he became vice-president to John Adams. Then in the
election of 1800 he beat John Adams to become President.
Probably the most important achievement of Jefferson's
presidency was the purchase of the Louisiana Territory
in 1803. This opened up a vast area to the new Americans
and made it easier to navigate the Mississippi River.
He was easily re-elected in 1804 with James Madison
as his vice-president.
After retirement, he personally directed the operations
of his mills and farms into his 70s. Jefferson's last
great public service was the founding of the University
of Virginia, which was chartered in 1819. He died at
Monticello on July 4, 1826, a few hours before John
Adams, on the 50th anniversary of the Declaration of
Historically, Jefferson was a man of controversy. Supposedly
a man devoted to individual rights and freedoms, his
ownership of over 200 slaves flew in the face of that
philosophy. Many African-Americans today do not view
him as the hero he is made out to be.