Topic: Jefferson's Gadgets

Lesson Plan

Jefferson’s Gardens: A Landscape of Opportunities: Section 3 – Creating Personal Space for Self-Reflection

Students will understand Jefferson's use of landscape to create both beauty and privacy; the architectural features of his homes at Monticello and summer retreat, Poplar Forest, for solitude, and...
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Jefferson’s sketch for a Spherical Sundial and pedestal

Jefferson drew this sketch for a Spherical Sundial and pedestal in a letter to architect Benjamin Latrobe.
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Jeffersons Inventions

Thomas Jefferson designed and changed many things. But he only thought up one thing that can be called an invention. This was the moldboard of least resistance.  He also thought up the cipher wheel and the spherical sundial, but historians are not sure if he was the first to invent them. 

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Moldboard of Least Resistence Plow

A recreation of a plow using Jefferson's 'Moldboard of Least Resistance'
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Polygraph

Jefferson owned several versions of the Polygraph, which he to make copies of his letters as he wrote them.
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Polygraph demonstration

A demonstration of the operation of a simple Polygraph model.

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Polygraph on Jefferson’s desk

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Recreation of Jefferson’s Spherical Sundial and pedestal

A recreation of Jefferson's Spherical Sundial based on his specifications.
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Revolving Bookstand

As many as five books could be placed on this bookstand, which was probably made at Monticello according to Jefferson’s design....
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Revolving Service Door