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View of Thomas Jefferson's garden
Kitchen inside Monticello
Outside view of Monticello and pond

Monticello near Charlottesville, VA

931 Thomas Jefferson Pkwy Charlottesville , VA 22902
Monticello was the primary plantation of Thomas Jefferson, the third President of the United States, who after inheriting quite a large amount of land from his father, started building Monticello when he was 26 years old.

Located just outside Charlottesville in the Piedmont region, the plantation was originally 5,000 acres, with extensive cultivation of tobacco and mixed crops, with labor by slaves. What started as a mainly tobacco plantation switched over to a wheat plantation later in Jefferson's life.

The house, which Jefferson designed, was based on the neoclassical principles described in the books of the Italian Renaissance architect Andrea Palladio. He reworked it through much of his presidency to include design elements popular in late eighteenth-century Europe. It contains many of his own design solutions.

The plantation at full operations included numerous outbuildings for specialized functions, a nailery, and quarters for domestic slaves along Mulberry Row near the house; gardens for flowers, produce, and Jefferson's experiments in plant breeding; plus tobacco fields and mixed crops. Cabins for field slaves were located further from the mansion.

At Jefferson's direction, he was buried on the grounds, an area now designated as the Monticello Cemetery, which is owned by the Monticello Association, a lineage society of his descendants through Martha Wayles Skelton Jefferson. After Jefferson's death, his daughter Martha Jefferson Randolph sold the property. Later, in 1923, the then owner sold the property to the Thomas Jefferson Foundation, which operates it as a house museum and educational institution. It has been designated a National Historic Landmark.


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