Born in 1743 in Shadwell, Virginia, Jefferson was the third president of the United States and the principal author of the Declaration of Independence. He began his political career in 1769 in the Virginia legislature. Forty years later, he retired as president of the United States. He died on July 4, 1826, at Monticello, his home in Virginia. He once wrote, “All my wishes end where I hope my days will end—at Monticello.”
Thomas Jefferson was a dedicated farmer, and his interest in agriculture is evident in much of his writings. His plantation Monticello included vegetable gardens, flower gardens, orchards, vineyards, grain fields, and ornamental landscapes. Jefferson worked on improving plant varieties as well as agricultural tools, such as the plow.
To celebrate his birthday, pay a visit to the country home he designed. To fully grasp his political philosophy, called Jeffersonianism, read his collected works, including “The Fundamentals of Government.” It was none other than Abraham Lincoln who said, “The principles of Jefferson are the axioms of a free society.”