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Winter was challenging at Monticello during Thomas Jefferson’s lifetime, especially for enslaved people. Assigned tasks and responsibilities continued, but with added seasonal factors like keeping themselves and Jefferson’s free family warm and dry, finding ways to light the long evenings, preserving food, and making their own food rations stretch. 

In this live Q&A, historian and ethnographer Marion Cohen discusses the realities of eighteenth-century winters and how enslaved cooks and house servants navigated through the season.

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