Today to Monticello to visit the First Citizen, Thos. Jefferson, but he was unable to Receive us. Hundreds of his Fellow Citizens waited upon him also, diverting themselves with Tours of the House and Gardens, which are both Marvelous.
M. and I walked up to the house from the parking area. We came to the family cemetery. I saw his tombstone and started weeping and had to move away.
“Here was buried Thomas Jefferson, author of the Declaration of American Independence, of the Statute of Virginia for Religious Freedom, and father of the University of Virginia.”
Then we walked in the vegetable garden and orchard. I picked a few cherries—they seem to be going to waste. I hope he won’t mind.
The house truly is a marvel. If he lived today, Jefferson no doubt would have a high-tech house with photo-voltaic solar panels, hydroponic gardens, and a garage full of classic and hybrid cars. And he would finally be able to serve fine Virginia wines.
And thence to Charlottesville, where we shall remain the next three Days.
The base of Jefferson’s obelisk tombstone is covered with coins. Some kind of unconscious folk-paganism going on there: offerings to the genius of Thomas Jefferson. I would have burned a pinch of incense had any been available.