Thomas Jefferson Fact File Biography: 1743 - 1826 *** Full Name: Thomas Jefferson *** Occupation: American Statesman, Lawyer, Planter, Architect and 3rd President of the United States *** Date of Birth: Thomas Jefferson was born on April 13th 1743 *** Place of Birth: Thomas Jefferson was born in Shadwell, Colony of Virginia, British America *** Family background: His father was Peter Jefferson, a surveyor and planter who was of English ancestry and his mother was Jane Randolph *** Early life and childhood: He grew up on the family plantation with many siblings, being the third out of ten *** Education: Thomas Jefferson was educated by tutors until he attended a local school and later would attend the College of William and Mary in Williamsburg ***
Thomas Jefferson Fact 1: Thomas Jefferson was born on April 13th 1743 and during the 18th century period in history when France and America both went through revolutions and the Industrial Revolution began in Britain.
Thomas Jefferson Fact 2: When a dear family friend died and Thomas’s father had been left the guardianship of the children he moved his own family into the home of the other family.
Thomas Jefferson Fact 3: His father died when he was just fourteen years old.
Thomas Jefferson Fact 4: Having graduated college in 1762 he began to read law under Professor George Wythe and would obtain his license while also working for Wythe as a law clerk.
Thomas Jefferson Fact 5: He was also an avid reader and treasured his books and although a large number perished in a house fire he would eventually amass around one thousand two hundred and fifty books in how own personal collection.
Thomas Jefferson Fact 6: Having completed his studies he would be admitted to the Virginia bar in 1767. As well as practicing law he would also become the delegate for Albermarle County in the Virginian House of Burgesses between 1769 and 1775.
Thomas Jefferson Fact 7: He was a great believe in reforms for slavery and would take some seven cases for slaves who were seeking their freedom.
Thomas Jefferson Fact 8: In court he would argue that “everyone comes into the world with a right to his own person and using it at his own will …. This is what is called personal liberty, and is given him by the author of nature, because it is necessary for his own sustenance.”
Thomas Jefferson Fact 9: The judge in this matter silenced him and would rule against him. In a fit of pique Jefferson handed his client a sum of money which would be used to aid his disappearance in the not too distance future.
Thomas Jefferson Fact 10: During 1768 he began to build his main home, Monticello which was positioned on a hilltop looking over an area of five hundred acres of plantation.
Thomas Jefferson Fact 11: In 1772 he married Martha Wayles Skelton and together they had six children but only Martha and Mary survived to adulthood. The couple were very happy together although sadly after the birth of their last child at the age of just thirty three, Martha died with Jefferson right by her side.
Thomas Jefferson Fact 12: Jefferson took the death of his wife very badly, he hid himself away for the better part of three weeks before emerging to ride his grief away often accompanied by his daughter Martha.
Thomas Jefferson Fact 13: He served as Secretary of State between 1790 and 1793. In 1775 he served as the delegate to the Second Continental Congress as the American Revolutionary War began.
Thomas Jefferson Fact 14: During this time Jefferson become strong friends with John Adams and through this bond Jefferson would be called upon to work on the Declaration of Independence.
Thomas Jefferson Fact 15: A committee of five were put together to write the constitution over a period some seventeen days. Jefferson would be responsible for the initial drafting of the document drawing from his own draft of the Virginian Constitution as well as the draft of the Virginian Declaration of Rights drafted by George Mason.
Thomas Jefferson Fact 16: When complete the other members amended as they saw fit and a final draft would be presented to Congress on June the 28th 1776.
Thomas Jefferson Fact 17: Congress made significant changes to the document, some of which Jefferson took great exception to but was unable to question.Thomas Jefferson Fact 18: By 1796 Jefferson would be elected as Vice President however by 1800 he once again decided to run against John Adams and this time out Adams’ campaign had been weakened by unpopular taxes. This election has gone down in history as “one of the most acrimonious in the annals of American history” however Jefferson would be elected as President with Aaron Burr as his Vice President.
Thomas Jefferson Fact 19: He would be sworn in as the 3rd President of the United States in the new Capitol of Washington D.C. on March 4th 1801.
Thomas Jefferson Fact 20: His term as President would see the First Barbary War as well as the purchase of the Louisiana territory.
Thomas Jefferson Fact 21: So successful did his first term prove as President he was persuaded to run for a second term, this time with George Clinton as his running mate and again he would be successful although overall his second term would see his popularity decline.
Thomas Jefferson Fact 22: Once he relinquished his term as President he pursued his interests in education and would be responsible for the building of the University of Virginia.
Thomas Jefferson Fact 23: Thomas Jefferson died on July 4th 1826 in his home surrounded by family and friends aged eighty three years of age and on the fiftieth anniversary of the Declaration of Independence. His body was laid to rest in the grounds of his home, Monticello. John Adams would also pass away within a few hours of Jefferson’s death.
Influence & Legacy of Thomas Jefferson: To summarize the legacy of Thomas Jefferson would be to quote his own gravestone which reads “Author of the Declaration of Independence and of the Statute of Virginia for religious freedom & Father of the University of Virginia.”
Short Facts about Thomas Jefferson for Kids
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