Thomas Jefferson Essay Research Paper Thomas Jefferson

Thomas Jefferson Essay, Research Paper

Thomas Jefferson was born on April 13, 1743 in Albemarle County, Va. Jefferson

attended the College of William and Mary and then studied law with George Wythe. In 1769 he

began six years as a representative in the Virginia House of Burgesses. In 1770 he began building

Monticello on land inherited by his father. Jefferson married Martha Wayles Skelton. They had

six children. Only two of them survived into their adulthood. His wife died on September 6,


Jefferson was the primary author of the Declaration of Independence. When Jefferson

returned to Virginia, he served in the House of Delegates until 1779. While the American

Revolution continued, Jefferson wanted to liberalize Virginia?s laws. Jefferson introduced

different bills that were resisted. His bill to create a free system of tax supported elementary

education for all except slaves was defeated. Jefferson?s bill on religious liberty wasn?t passed

until 1786.

In June 1779, Jefferson was elected governor of Virginia. His political enemies criticized

his performance as governor. From 1784 to 1789, Jefferson lived outside the United States. He

was sent to Paris as a commissioner to help negotiate commercial treaties. When Jefferson left

Paris on September 26, 1789, he expected to return to his post. When he came back Congress

appointed him to secretary of state. In 1796, Jefferson became the presidential candidate of the

Democratic-Republican part. Jefferson lost to John Adams and became vice-president.

Jefferson?s triumph of president was delayed as a result of a tie with Aaron Burr.

Federalist leaders opposed Jefferson, but the people approved his policies. Internal taxes were

reduced, the military budget was cut and plans were made to eliminate the public debt.

Jefferson?s main concern for his second term of presidency was foreign affairs. He was the first

president to be inaugurated in Washington. The purchase of Louisiana from France in 1803 was

the most notable act of his administration.

In the final 17 years of his life, Jefferson?s major accomplishment was the founding of the

University of Virginia at Charlottesville. He planned it, designed it, and supervised it. On July 4,

1826, the 50th anniversary of the Declaration of Independence, Jefferson died at Monticello.

Jefferson had and enormous variety of interests and skills, ranging from education and science to

architecture and music.


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