Valdosta Daily Times

Features

April 14, 2013

Thomas Jefferson’s Retreat

A look at his ‘other’ home on the weekend of his birthday

WASHINGTON — Thomas Jefferson, governor of Virginia, founder of the University of Virginia, author of our Declaration of Independence, and third president of the U.S., was born in Shadwell, Va., 270 years ago April 13.

Jefferson is closely associated with Monticello, his long-time Virginia home near Charlottesville that he designed, built, and continually altered over a period of four decades after moving into the home in 1770. The Charlottesville home, owned by a non-profit foundation since 1923, is a popular stop for travelers and welcomes just under a half-million visitors each year.

JEFFERSON’S RETREAT

Less well known is another Virginia home of Thomas Jefferson, Poplar Forest. Located near Lynchburg, 80 miles southwest of Charlottesville, Poplar Forest became Jefferson’s “retreat” where he could relax, read books, and enjoy time with his family and friends. These had become ever rarer luxuries in Washington where he was continually occupied with issues related to the nation’s public affairs.

The house at Poplar Forest was constructed on a 4,800-acre plantation that Jefferson’s wife, Martha, inherited from her father in 1773. Jefferson served as Poplar Forest’s absentee plantation manager during his working years as a lawyer and public servant, and it was not until three years prior to the end of his presidency in 1809 that he traveled here to supervise the laying of the foundation for what was to become his retreat. His wife, Martha, had passed away in 1782 after 10 years of marriage. Following his years as president, Jefferson traveled to Poplar Forest three to four times each year for stays that would last for up to two months.  

During his final trip to Poplar Forest in 1823, three years prior to his death, Jefferson turned the plantation and home over to grandson, Francis Eppes, who five years later sold it to a neighbor before moving to Florida. The house would subsequently suffer fire damage, pass through several owners, and go through major alterations before being acquired in 1983 by the Corporation for Jefferson’s Poplar Forest, a nonprofit with the goal of restoring and preserving the home and grounds.  

 

Text Only
Features
  • 140410-AR-Wake_Compound001.jpg Bringing wakeboards to Lowndes

    In college, many dream of their future career paths and, while some may seem far fetched, some people are able to make theirs a reality. Luke Tilt and Quinn Silvernale were able to do just that.

    April 14, 2014 1 Photo

  • 140401-Ballet003.jpg Beautiful Dancers

    The Ballet School in Valdosta offers children with special needs the chance to live out their dreams of being a dancer. For many, this may have seemed like a far fetched dream given their physical limitations, but as the Ballet School proves, there is no such thing as a physical limitation.

    April 13, 2014 5 Photos

  • Dido and Aeneas 1.jpg VSU Opera, Chamber Singers Present ‘Dido and Aeneas’ April 19-20

    The Valdosta State University Department of Music will present “Dido and Aeneas” at 7:30 p.m. on Saturday, April 19, and 3 p.m. on Sunday, April 20, in the West Hall Rotunda. Seating is limited to 100 people per performance.

    April 12, 2014 2 Photos

  • Film Review Captain A_Rich copy.jpg A salute to ‘Captain America’

    Our reviewer looks at "Captain America: The Winter Soldier," 'The Grand Budapest hotel' and "Bad Words."

    April 11, 2014 1 Photo

  • easter eggs.jpg VLPRA hosts ‘Egg-ceptional Egg Hunt’ Saturday

    Easter egg hunts are an old tradition, but this Saturday, the Therapeutic Division of the Valdosta-Lowndes County Parks & Recreation Authority is putting a new spin on it.

    April 9, 2014 1 Photo

  • wanee1.jpg Wanee Festival 2014

    For a decade, the Allman Brothers have made it an annual tradition to settle along the Suwannee River and jam with some friends and fellow musicians. And music fans from near and far can come watch, listen and dance.

    April 6, 2014 3 Photos

  • vhsart5.jpg MUST RUN All winners in the VHS art show

    Judging the Valdosta High School art show is no easy feat.

    April 6, 2014 5 Photos

  • Film Review Noah_Rich copy.jpg ‘Noah’ fails to stay afloat

    Our reviewer looks at the movies "Noah" and "Sabotage."

    April 5, 2014 1 Photo

  • flag.jpg Stand Up America Rally this weekend

    It’s not a political rally, but rather a gathering this weekend to “stand up and say we want America back.”

    April 3, 2014 1 Photo

  • casa.jpg CASA volunteers sworn to service

    On Thursday, March 13, the Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) of the Alapaha Judicial Circuit welcomed eight new members to the CASA program.

    April 2, 2014 1 Photo

Top News
Poll

What you think about school and workplace rules about Facebook friends?

There have to be rules.
No need for rules, just use common sense.
If people want to be friends, what is the big deal?
Nobody uses Facebook anymore.
     View Results