Visitors to Monticello are sometimes puzzled by the sight of coins on Thomas Jefferson's gravestone. These are thrown there by tourists and others who have visited the grave site. This phenomenon was first remarked upon by the Monticello Association - who own and care for the graveyard - in 1978.
The West Front of Monticello is one of the most widely recognized views of Thomas Jefferson's home. Thousands upon thousands of visitors have posed on the West Portico steps to have their images recorded in front of the facade that has graced coins, postage stamps, and countless other objects over the years. Every Fourth of July, new U.S. citizens are sworn in on the same masonry steps. But were there finished steps at the West Portico in Jefferson's day?