Topic: People Profiles


Martha Wayles Jefferson, Jefferson’s wife

Only a few facts are known about Thomas Jefferson’s wife. There are no letters written by her. There are no pictures of her. Martha Wayles was born October 19, 1748 in Charles City County, Virginia. She married Thomas Jefferson in 1772 on New Year’s Day. She was twenty-three years old. Martha shared with Jefferson a…


Mary Jefferson Eppes, Jefferson’s daughter

Mary (who was sometimes called Maria) was born in 1778 at Monticello. Her parents were Martha and Thomas Jefferson. When her mother died, Mary was only four years old. Jefferson sent Mary and her younger sister Lucy to live with their aunt. Soon little Lucy died. Jefferson often wrote Mary. He asked about her schooling,…


Mary Jefferson Randolph, Jefferson’s granddaughter

Mary was born in 1803. Her mother was Martha Jefferson Randolph. Her father was Thomas Mann Randolph. She was born at Edgehill, her parent’s plantation. She spent much of her time at Monticello. Mary never married. With her sister, Cornelia, she opened a ladies school at Edgehill. She also helped nurse her nieces and nephews.…

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Mary, Cornelia, and George Wythe Randolph

View of the West Front of Monticello and Garden by Jane Braddick Peticolas.
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Meriwether Lewis Randolph

Miniature portrait of Meriwether Lewis Randolph

Meriwether Lewis Randolph, Jeffersons grandson

Meriwether Lewis was born in 1810 at Monticello. His mother was Martha Jefferson Randolph. His father was Thomas Mann Randolph. He was named for Meriwether Lewis, the explorer. Meriwether Lewis studied at the University of Virginia. He went west, and was appointed the Secretary of the Arkansas Territory. In 1835 he married Elizabeth Martin. They…

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Monticello Book Room Watercolor

After the British burned the Washington in 1814, Thomas Jefferson offered to sell his books to Congress to rebuild the Library of Congress. Artist G. B. McIntosh imagines...
Lesson Plan

Overrated or Undervalued?

Understanding the historical significance of the contributions of Thomas Jefferson during the American Revolution, the creation of the Union, his presidential term, and his retirement years, as well...

Sally Hemings, an enslaved house servant

Sally Hemings was born in 1773. Her mother Betty Hemings was a slave. Laws at the time made Sally a slave. But she was described as “mighty near white.” In 1774, Betty Hemings was given to Martha Jefferson, Thomas Jefferson’s wife. Sally and her ten brothers and sisters came to Monticello with their mother. What…



Sometimes history is more mystery than fact. This is the case with what we know about Sandy. Much of his life’s story is a mystery to us today. He was born about 1734 and his death date is unknown. Sandy ran away from Monticello in 1769. Thomas Jefferson then placed an advertisement in The Virginia…