Thomas Jefferson, the third president of the United States was born on April 13, 1734. His parents, Peter and Jane Randolph Jefferson, lived in central Virginia. Their house was on a farm they called Shadwell. It was about five miles east of the town of Charlottesville.
In 1760 Thomas Jefferson entered college. Thomas studied hard and quickly mastered difficult subjects such as grammar, physics, and calculus. In about two years of college he learned everything you could know on the arts and science and moral philosophies. He left the college in April of 1762. Three years later, in 1767 Thomas became a lawyer. He didnÃÂ¹t know it at the time but it would soon be a hazardous job. Thomas hated being a lawyer but turned out to be very successful. His work grew from sixty-eight cases his first year to more than four hundred annually just a few years later.
Thomas ran for the colonial Virginia legislature, called the House of Burgesses, and won easily in 1769. Every two years, he had to be reelected. To campaign, he just invited his neighbors to Shadwell, served them cake and rum punch, and waited for victory. It always came.
In 1770 Thomas met a girl by the name of Martha Wayles Skelton. Two years later on New YearÃÂ¹s Day Martha and Thomas were married. Throughout his life, Thomas hoped for the chance to live a quiet family life at Monticello. He was an expert farmer, a fine architect and builder, well liked by his workers and even his slaves, and deeply in love with his new wife. But in early 1770s, the fires of revolution were beginning to burn from colonial Virginia, quiet times at home were becoming difficult to find.
In 1770 a large force of British soldiers had fired on...