Artist/Maker: William Coffee (c. 1774 - c. 1846)
Created: c. 1819
Dimensions: 34 × 20.5 × 9 (13 1/2 × 8 1/4 × 3 1/2 in.)
Location: South Square Room
Provenance: Thomas Jefferson; by descent to Thomas Jefferson Randolph; by descent to a private collection and Mrs. James C. Moyer; by loan to the Thomas Jefferson Foundation since 1985
Accession Number: 1985-28
Historical Notes: Cornelia Jefferson Randolph was the fifth child of Martha Jefferson Randolph and Thomas Mann Randolph. Jefferson wrote to Cornelia before she could even pen a reply and sent her poems for her scrapbook, such as the "grasshopper's Ball," that he cut from newspapers and magazines. She accompanied her grandfather on his trips to Poplar Forest. In 1817 Jefferson wrote Martha from his retreat and described Cornelia and her sister Ellen as "the severest students I have ever met with. they never leave their room but to come to meals. about twilight of the evening, we sally out with the owls & bats, and take our evening exercise on the terras."
Podcast: Monticello Guide Laura-Michal Balderson discusses Cornelia Jefferson Randolph's relationship with her grandfather, Thomas Jefferson, and highlights her mechanical drawings of the University of Virginia and Monticello's first floor.
(Approx. 3 min.)
During their stay at Poplar Forest Jefferson took Ellen and Cornelia to visit nearby Natural Bridge. In two letters to her sister Virginia, Cornelia vividly described their eventful trip. She shared her grandfather's affection for the bridge, writing that "the scene was beyond any thing you can imagine possibly."
- Text from Stein, Worlds, 235
931 Thomas Jefferson Parkway
Charlottesville, VA 22902