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Bedroom Portholes


Thomas Jefferson wrote to his daughter Martha in 1815, "In the closet over my bed you will find a bag tied up, and labelled 'Wolf-skin pelisse,' and another labelled 'fur-boots,' wherein those articles will be found."1 The "closet" refers to a small storage space above the bed, ventilated by three oval-shaped, porthole-like openings. The storage space is reached through the doorway to the right of the head of the bed, which conceals a ladder-like set of stairs.

  • 1. Jefferson to Martha Jefferson Randolph, November 4, 1815, in PTJ:RS, 9:147-48. Transcription available at Founders Online.
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