You are here

Recent Comments

JVJx's picture
You my friend, could not be more wrong. "Well Regulated Militia" was not for " individual state's National Guard, to protect against a Federal attack." You should do more research. Starting with District of Columbia v. Heller; which held 'the Second Amendment to the United States Constitution creates an individual right to keep and bear arms apart from any military purpose."
Johnny Vaughn
mmenge's picture
In a quick Google search, I pull up a 1999 article in the Cincinnati Enquirer quoting a descendant of Madison Hemings named Priscilla Lanier saying she only learned of a link to Jefferson in the 1980s, when a cousin began doing genealogical research. So at least in this case, the history of a link to Jefferson was not passed down through the generations. There wasn't an oral tradition of a link to Jefferson.
Margaret Menge
mmenge's picture
Under the year 1862, it says: "Bacon was not employed at Monticello until five years after Harriet Hemings's birth." This is not accurate. Edmund Bacon said to Rev. Pierson that he began work at Monticello on December 27, 1800. Harriet Hemings was born in April of 1801. At the time Bacon arrived at Monticello, therefore, Sally Hemings was four or five months pregnant with Harriet. Maybe there is still a problem with chronology. But maybe not. A man is usually still the lover after impregnating the woman. Often he draws closer to her....... Here is the specific reference: In "Jefferson at Monticello" by Rev. Hamilton W. Pierson (published 1862), Edmund Bacon said the following: "I went to live with him [Jefferson] the 27th of the December before he was inaugurated as President." Jefferson was inaugurated in 1801. Therefore, Bacon began work at Monticello on Dec. 27, 1800. Bacon was promoted to overseer of Monticello in 1806. But he began work there in 1800. It seems that his eye-witness account was dismissed due to poor attention to detail on the part of Monticello researchers and this committee.
Margaret Menge
mmenge's picture
I appreciate the information in this article, except for the last sentence, which is not correct. The sentence reads: "DNA testing in the late twentieth century, however, found no genetic link between Hemings and Carr descendants, refuting the assertion that Samuel Carr or his brother Peter had fathered Sally Hemings’s children." The DNA testing led by Dr. Eugene Foster in 1998 only involved a test on one descendant of one child of Sally Hemings -- John Weeks Jefferson, a descendant of Eston Hemings. Further, the oral tradition in the Eston Hemings family had always been that they were in some way related to Thomas Jefferson, most said through an "uncle." No DNA tests have been done on the descendants of the other three children of Sally Hemings who lived to adulthood. Two of those children "passed" into white society and are lost to history. The descendants of Madison Hemings, the fourth child, have not been tested. In sum, there has been no refutation of the assertion that Peter or Samuel Carr were involved in a long-term relationship with Sally Hemings and fathered children by her. Both Peter and Samuel Carr were in their 20s and 30s when Sally Hemings was getting pregnant and bearing children, while Thomas Jefferson was in his 50s and 60s.
Margaret Menge
Donald M. Scott's picture
Thanks for this balanced view of things. As a scholar, and writer, who's researched Jefferson and his colleagues for years, I find the whole Hemmings story to be highly suspect. As a juror on a murder trial, which attempted to use dna evidence to convict someone without success, I know DNA must be taken with a large grain of salt. As far as Paris goes - he was famously head-over-heels in love with Maria Cosway, who was married to a homosexual man, and spent much of his spare time worrying and writing about that. It's not likely he'd have had the time for Sally Hemmings - who, after all, was in her early teens and probably no competition for Cosway. Based on my research, and the jury experience, I believe Jefferson could not be indicted, let alone convicted of a love affair with a slave.
mindranger Don
AmyKimSto's picture
What is behind Monticello not updating info on this Thomas Jefferson-Sally Hemings-Thomas Woodson fantasy ? I wrote to you guys recently, asking if you wanted a copy of his obit, but not interested in setting the story straight ? Thomas Woodson´s obit from 3 Feb 1876, in Jackson County, Ohio, clearly states that he was born on 10 Jun 1784 in Chesterfield County, VA, and moved to Goochland County, VA, in 1796. Most of the census records also back up his birth year. Suddenly, wife Jemima isn´t 8 years his senior. Go figure. He also died 25 Jan 1876 and not 1879. His headstone is obviously of a newer date and "conveniently" has cherry-picked dates that suited someone´s story. Whoever supplied the newspaper with the info knew exactly what they were talking about and knew his movements well. Do the math. This 1784 birth year for Thomas eliminates Sally Hemings as his mother; she would have been about 10 at conception and 11 at giving birth. Me thinks, not so much. yDNA tests have also concluded that Jefferson was not the father. I stem from the Woodsons of early VA and have begun plopping extended Woodsons into my tree and have uncovered a possible scenario, connecting Thomas Woodson to mid-1780s Chesterfield and the Woodsons (who normally were not in that county of VA) and have a scenario as to why he was moved to Goochland. My research will turn up several surnames to which descendents can compare on their DNA results. People need to give it up and do a little bit of research to uncover the real truth, even though old family stories make for interesting chatter at a cocktail party. I do not doubt that Thomas Woodson is seen as having ties to Monticello; Col.John Woodson was married to Thomas Jefferson´s aunt Dorothea Randolph. I´m sure that the family stories are just a jumble of misinformation and embellishing.
Kurt's picture
Some of the timeline of Thomas Jefferson is specious. There is no evidence that Thomas Jefferson fathered any of Sally Hemings' children. The DNA test that was done only showed that a Jefferson male fathered Eston Hemings. The descendants of Eston were told Eston was fathered by a Jefferson "Uncle." There were many male Jeffersons who lived near Monticello. The most likely person to have fathered Eston was Randolph Jefferson, who had a reputation for spending lots of time with the Jefferson's slaves, playing music and dancing long into the night. Jefferson himself denied all of the accusations, saying that the only transgression he was guilty of was courting a married woman before he was married. Thomas Jefferson's worst enemies in his own day and in the present day, including historian Forrest McDonald, have said there is no basis for the claims.
robertmorelli's picture
I know that you want to spin this in the best light but this is the one topic where Mr. Jefferson and I part ways. He was a product of his time in the south and we should be honest about that. He was a racist. He believed that blacks were inferior and did not do all that was in his power to persuade the VA government or the US government to abolish slavery. He had a working plantation and he was making money off of human bondage. Please don't sugar coat it with contradictions like, "Jefferson also thought that slavery was contrary to the laws of nature, which decreed that everyone had a right to personal liberty" with nonsensical statements like, "To Jefferson, it was anti-democratic and contrary to the principles of the American Revolution for the federal government to enact abolition". He was a brilliant man, a tolerant man, an enlightened man when it came to the rights of white people, and he is one of my favorite founding fathers. Yet he never freed but a few of his slaves and we really should call an 18th century slave-holding racist what he was.
johneh77's picture
years ago I remember seeing a garden show that featured a greenhouse. I'm sure it was at Monticello but my memory isn't perfect. The greenhouse was earth bermed or sunken and had a wood stove built into the back with apparent seed starting area on it. the stove was masonry that went the length of the back wall. I would like to know if that was indeed at Monticello or my memory is faulty also if anyone knows which show that was. I would love to get another look at that greenhouse so if anyone has a link to pictures or video please let me know. I have searched a lot of photos and am beginning to doubt my memory as I haven't seen anything about it at Monticello.
John H
Gcarta's picture
I would like to ask all dog owners to please keep their dogs on a leash at all times as required on all trails. While the vast majority of dog owners that I see visiting Kemper park are extremely respectful, there some who ignore the leash rule on a regular basis creating danger for other leashed dogs and apprehension by their owners, danger for wildlife, and disturbance of the peace. Their disregard for the rules makes it difficult for others to enjoy the Trails. Please, respect the rules of this wonderful community resource so we may all enjoy it. Thank you.


Login or register to participate in our online community.