In this livestream we look at the experiences of white women who lived on the mountaintop, including Thomas Jefferson’s wife, Martha Wayles Skelton Jefferson; Jefferson’s sister, Anna Scott Jefferson Marks; Jefferson’s daughter, Martha Jefferson Randolph, and her daughters. Their positions of comfort and authority stood in stark contrast to women held in bondage on the plantation, yet their choices were curtailed by patriarchal laws and customs of the time.

Associate Curator Emilie Johnson, Associate Curator of Decorative Arts Diane Ehrenpreis, and Senior Historian and Donor Relations Officer Ann Lucas discuss the lives of these women, the documents they left behind, and how historians use those sources to better understand the past.