Thomas Jefferson's MonticelloBook - 2002
Monticello, Thomas Jefferson's mountaintop home in Charlottesville, Virginia, has attracted public attention ever since Jefferson's own day, when sightseers regularly visited the grounds in the hope of catching a glimpse of the former president. In our own day, Monticello has been added to the United Nation' list of World Heritage Sites that must be protected at all costs, designating the house and grounds as an international treasure.
Thomas Jefferson's Monticello is a collection of essays and color photography showcasing this extraordinary American home. Featuring essays written by scholars at Monticello, chapters focus on all aspects of the house and plantation. Monticello, a model of elegance and symmetry, was designed by Jefferson himself, whose architectural prowess prompted a visitor in 1782 to note: "Mr. Jefferson is the first American who has consulted the Fine Arts to know how he should shelter himself from the weather." Inside, Jefferson assembled a world-class collection of objects and furnishings: art and porcelain from France, scientific instruments from England, the finest American furniture from Philadelphia and New York, natural artifacts brought back from the West, as well as furnishings made in Monticello's own joinery by enslaved craftsmen. Surrounding the house, Monticello's celebrated gardens and grounds form an experimental yet breathtakingly lovely landscape of flowers, fruits, and vegetables from the Old and New Worlds. A final chapter on the plantation and the enslaved community at Monticello provides a context in which to place and understand the house and its owner.
With an introductory essay by Wendell Garrett, this compilation is a comprehensive, long-awaited study of Thomas Jefferson's "little mountain."