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Thomas Jefferson's “misogynistic” views?

Thomas Jefferson's “misogynistic” views?


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I'm reading The Hemingses of Monticello, by Annette Gordon-Reed, and I came across a quote on page 93 that reads:

"… As a teenage boy, [Jefferson] reproduced excerpts from poems and other literature that can be interpreted as hostile to women… "

Later, Gordon-Reed refers to Jefferson's views as misogynistic. What poems/literature is she referring to and where did he "reproduce" them? I've searched on Google but haven't found anything.

*Obviously, it was the 17-1800's, so he wouldn't be championing modern feminism, but there is room between modern feminism and misogynism.


I'd guess she's probably referring to his Literary Commonplace Book, which it looks like he compiled while he was 15-29.

Commonplace books were much like modern school journals and notebooks, which students of the era were expected to keep as part of their studies. Jefferson also had a Legal Commonplace Book, for his legal studies, but that likely didn't contain poetry clippings.

Thumbing through it, roughly half of it is in Latin (which I am really bad at) and Greek (which I know not at all). I did see bits credited to Euripides, Virgil, Homer (Iliad and Odyssey both), Ovid, Alexander Pope, Milton, Shakespeare, and a smattering of lesser-known English poets and playwrights that were popular at the time.

Some bits of Milton's Paradise Lost could be viewed as reaffirming that era's gender roles. For instance, he reproduced this passage (and not the text around it):

Thus it shall befall Him, who, to worth in women overtrusting, Lets her will rule: restraint she will not brook; And, left to herself, if evil thence ensue, She first his weak indulgence will accuse.

There are also several passages from Otway's play The Orphan reproduced, some of which are not very complimentary to women, some not very complimentary to men. It was apparently a quite popular play at the time.

So I can't speak to more than the half or so in English, but from that I think its fair to say that he seemed to not be logging particularly unusual feelings toward women at the time (which is still quite bad enough, given the time in question).

Perhaps some of the Latin poetry is juicier. Sadly, no Catullus though.


Thomas Jefferson 'Came Out Very Clearly' Against LGBT Rights, Pundit Claims

If one right-wing pundit is to be believed, one of America's Founding Fathers would have absolutely no interest in lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) equality.

Self-taught "historian" David Barton, who leads a Keep The Promise PAC backing 2016 Republican presidential hopeful Ted Cruz, claimed on Glenn Beck's radio show that Thomas Jefferson "came out very clearly" against the LGBT community during his presidency. The interview coincided with the re-release of The Jefferson Lies: Exposing the Myths You've Always Believed About Thomas Jefferson, Barton's controversial 2012 book which examined Jefferson's views on government, marriage and Christianity.

"He actually introduced a bill that said that laws should be those that are recognized by the Bible," Barton told Beck. "Marriage should be based on biblical recognition. So, he said marriage has got to be defined by what the Bible defines it as. That's the law that he introduced."

Jefferson, he continued, "also said that sexual relations were designed for procreation, not for entertainment. So sexual relations was designed by the Creator, throughout the law of nature, for procreation. Anything that violates that, violates the laws of nature."

Lies is now being re-released by conservative website WorldNetDaily after its original publisher, Thomas Nelson, ceased distribution of the book shortly after it was originally published, citing "basic truths [that] just were not there," according to NPR.

The remarks aren't particularly surprising given Barton's history of anti-LGBT rhetoric. In 2015, he suggested that the American government could, in theory, outlaw homosexuality, and claimed that child molesters would be free to openly serve in the U.S. military once the ban on transgender service members is lifted.

Not sure where you get your information from, David, but we're having a hard time taking you seriously when your research has been so widely debunked.


Sally Hemings and Thomas Jefferson

Even before he wrote the story linking Jefferson to Hemings, Callender had earned a notorious reputation. He had written a stinging pamphlet in1796 that accused Alexander Hamilton of corruption and adultery. Hamilton admitted to the latter but denied the former. He was ultimately exonerated of having done anything illegal. Jefferson, ironically, had encouraged Callender when his targets were Federalists, like Hamilton, and even financed some of his projects.

Callender was arrested under the Sedition Act in 1800, was fined $250, and spent almost a year in jail. After Jefferson assumed the presidency in1801, he pardoned Callender. Shortly thereafter, Callender, in need of money, pressed Jefferson for the job of postmaster in Richmond, Virginia. True to form, Callender’s request included an insinuation of blackmail if Jefferson refused. Jefferson had come to see Callender for the scamp that he really was and refused to appoint someone with such a seedy past to any federal position.

Callender took a job with the anti-Jefferson newspaper the Recorder. He revealed that Jefferson had bankrolled some of his earlier scandalous writings—a charge that Jefferson was forced to admit. Callender then hit him with the Hemings story. Callender had never visited Monticello and based his information on the fact that several of Jefferson’s slaves were light-skinned. Callender later implicated Jefferson in the seduction of a married woman. Jefferson eventually confessed to that charge but deflected the Hemings accusation by pretending it did not exist (at least in public privately he denied it). In 1802, one of Callender’s public tar-gets clubbed him over the head. A year later, Callender was found drowned . . . in two feet of water. By the time Jefferson died in 1826, few remembered the accusations, save for the occasional snide attack in the Northern abolitionist press. That changed in 1873.

Madison Hemings, the youngest son of Sally Hemings, granted abolitionist newspaperman Samuel Wetmore an interview in 1873. Madison had intimated to close family and friends that he was Jefferson’s son and disclosed this alleged relationship to Wetmore, who published it in his newspaper in Ohio. The story quickly spread across the country. Critics argued that Wetmore’s article was a mere rewrite of Callender’s original (the same word was even misspelled), and Jefferson’s grandchildren denied its accusations. For most people that again put an end to it.

Fast forward one hundred years. Fawn Brodie’s 1974 book Thomas Jefferson: An Intimate History revived interest in the “affair.” Brodie sided with Madison Hemings and argued that Jefferson fathered all of Sally Hemings’ children. Historians, including Jefferson’s most important biographer, Dumas Malone, doubted the Hemings story, but the general public seemed eager to accept it. Twenty years later, lawyer Annette Gordon-Reed published Thomas Jefferson and Sally Hemings: An American Controversy in an attempt to vindicate Madison Hemings. The book and modern advancements in DNA technology led to several members of the Jefferson and Hemings line having their DNA analyzed. The results showed that a “male” in Thomas Jefferson’s family was indeed a direct ancestor of the Hemings children, principally Madison Hemings, but did not conclusively prove that Thomas Jefferson was the link. A 2000 study conducted by the Thomas Jefferson Foundation, however, determined that Jefferson was, unequivocally, the father of Madison Hemings and possibly Sally Hemings’ other children. Omitted from the report was the one dissenting voice on the committee, the medical doctor charged with verifying the DNA tests. Though noting that Jefferson could have been the father of Hemings’ children, he preferred to leave the question open due to the circumstantial nature of the evidence and argued that the majority of the committee had arrived at their conclusion before examining all available information. In essence, most of the committee believed the burden was to prove Jefferson innocent, not guilty.

In 2001, the Thomas Jefferson Heritage Society, a group that possessed more academic clout than the Foundation, released a report that directly contradicted the Foundation’s conclusions. In the summary to their findings, the scholars stated, “With the exception of one member. . . our individual conclusions range from serious skepticism about the charge to a conviction that it is almost certainly false.”2 The scholars’ report identified various inconsistencies in both the oral and written records that the Foundation used to indict Jefferson, and argued that Madison Hemings was upset because he felt Jefferson and his family had not treated the Hemings family well.

The scholars also noted that Jefferson’s overseer, Edmund Bacon, had not only flatly denied that Jefferson had fathered any of Sally Hemings’ children, but reported that he had seen a white man—not Thomas Jefferson—leave Hemings’ bedchamber many mornings before work. The scholars pointed to Jefferson’s brother, often called “Uncle Randolph,” as the probable father of Heming’s children. Randolph Jefferson was reported to have a social relationship with the Monticello slaves and had possibly fathered other children through his own servants.

Because of the circumstantial nature of the evidence in the case, it can not be proven conclusively that Jefferson fathered any of Sally Hemings’ children. It is possible but not probable. If Jefferson were to stand trial for paternity with the current evidence in hand, an honest jury would find him “not guilty.” So should historians and so should the public.


Thomas Jefferson and US Foreign Relations

Thomas Jefferson was a key architect of early American foreign policy. He had a clear vision of the place of the new republic in the world, which he articulated in a number of writings and state papers. The key elements to his strategic vision were geographic expansion and free trade. Throughout his long public career Jefferson sought to realize these ends, particularly during his time as US minister to France, secretary of state, vice president, and president. He believed that the United States should expand westward and that its citizens should be free to trade globally. He sought to maintain the right of the United States to trade freely during the wars arising from the French Revolution and its aftermath. This led to his greatest achievement, the Louisiana Purchase, but also to conflicts with the Barbary States and, ultimately, Great Britain. He believed that the United States should usher in a new world of republican diplomacy and that it would be in the vanguard of the global republican movement. In the literature on US foreign policy, historians have tended to identify two main schools of practice dividing practitioners into idealists and realists. Jefferson is often regarded as the founder of the idealist tradition. This somewhat misreads him. While he pursued clear idealistic ends—a world dominated by republics freely trading with each other—he did so using a variety of methods including diplomacy, war, and economic coercion.

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The complicated history of Thomas Jefferson’s Koran

This week, like other new members of Congress, incoming Michigan Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D) will take her first oath of office. Unlike most other incoming members of Congress, however, Tlaib will be sworn in on the Koran, Islam’s holiest book. And not just any Koran, but the 1734 English translation of the work that belonged to Thomas Jefferson and now resides in the Library of Congress.

One of the country’s first two Muslim congresswomen elected, both elected in November, Tlaib said she hoped to make a critical point with the choice of tome. “It’s important to me because a lot of Americans have this kind of feeling that Islam is somehow foreign to American history,” she told the Detroit Free Press. "Muslims were there at the beginning.”

Longtime Congress watchers will recall Rep. Keith Ellison (D-Minn.), America’s first Muslim member of the body, also used Jefferson’s Koran for his 2007 swearing-in. "It demonstrates that from the very beginning of our country, we had people who were visionary, who were religiously tolerant, who believed that knowledge and wisdom could be gleaned from any number of sources, including the Koran,” Ellison told the Associated Press at the time.

These are worthy sentiments. But they are also not the whole story. That is because Jefferson’s 1734 translation of the Koran was not produced out of a special love for Islam, but rather to further Christian missionary efforts in Muslim lands. As translator George Sale wrote in his introduction to the reader, “Whatever use an impartial version of the Korân may be of in other respects, it is absolutely necessary to undeceive those who, from the ignorant or unfair translations which have appeared, have entertained too favourable an opinion of the original, and also to enable us effectually to expose the imposture.”

While Sale opposed the coerced conversion of Muslims and acknowledged virtues in Mohammed’s teachings, he was nonetheless a product of his religiously-fraught time who saw Islam as fundamentally foreign. “The Protestants alone are able to attack the Korân with success,” he wrote in his introduction, “and for them, I trust, Providence has reserved the glory of its overthrow.” Noting these very lines, one scholar cites Sale’s work as an example of religious intolerance in the republic’s early days.

In other words, Jefferson’s Koran is a more complicated artifact than the past decade or so of media coverage would have you believe. But does that mean the book is ill-suited to mark the induction of a Muslim legislator into the American government? Not at all. In fact, Jefferson’s Koran would be particularly appropriate for this occasion, not in spite of the prejudice within it, but because of it.


Bill for Establishing a System of Public Education

A Bill for establishing a system of public education.

1. For establishing schools at which the children of all the citizens of this Commonwealth may recieve a primary grade of education at the common expense, Be it enacted by the General assembly of Virginia as follows. At the first session of the Superior court in every county within this Commonwealth, next ensuing the passage of this act, the Judge thereof shall appoint three discreet and well informed persons, residents of the county < and not being ministers of the gospel of any denomination > to serve as Visitors of the primary schools in the said county, of which appointment the Sheriff shall within 15. days thereafter deliver a certificate under the hand of the clerk of the said court to each of the persons so appointed.

2. The sd Visitors shall meet at the courthouse of their county on the 1 st county court day after they shall have recieved notice of their appointment and afterwards at such times and places as they, or any two of them, with reasonable notice to the 3 d shall have agreed, and shall proceed to divide their county into wards, by metes and bounds so designated as to comprehend each about the number of militia sufficient for a company, and so also as not to divide and place in different wards the lands of any one person held in one body: which division into wards shall, within 6 months from the date of their appointment, be compleatly designated published and reported, by their metes and bounds to the office of the clerk of the Superior court there to be recorded subject however to such alterations from time to time afterwards as changes of circumstances shall, in the opinion of the sd visitors, or their successors, with the approbation of the sd court, render expedient.

3. The sd original division into wards being made, the Visitors shall appoint days for the first meeting of every ward at such place as they shall name within the same of which appointment notice shall be given at least two weeks before the day of meeting by advertisement at some public place within the ward, requiring every free white male citizen of full age, resident within the ward, to meet at the place, and by the hour of twelve of the day so appointed at which meeting some one of the visitors shall also attend and, a majority of the sd warders being in attendance, the visitors present shall propose to them to decide, by a majority of their votes, the location of a school house for the ward, and of a dwelling house for the teacher (the owner of the ground consenting thereto) the size and structure of the sd houses, & whether the same shall be built by the joint labor of the Warders, or by their pecuniary contributions and also to elect, by a plurality of their votes, a Warden, resident, who shall direct & superintend the said buildings, & be charged with their future care.

4. And, if they decide that the sd buildings shall be erected by the joint labor of the warders, then all persons within the sd ward, liable to work on the highways, shall attend at the order of the Warden, and, under his direction, shall labor thereon until compleated, under the same penalties as provided by law to enforce labor on the highways. And, if they decide on erection by pecuniary contributions, the residents, & owners of property within the ward shall contribute towards the cost each in proportion to the taxes they last paid to the state for their persons and for the same property, of which the Sheriff shall furnish a statement to the Warden, who, according to the ratio of that statement, shall apportion and assess the quota of contribution for each, and be authorised to demand, recieve and apply the same to the purposes of the contribution, and to render account thereof, as in all other his pecuniary transactions for the school to the Visitors: and on failure of payment by any contributor, the sheriff, on the order of the Warden, shall collect and render the same, under like powers and regulations as provided for the collection of the public taxes. and in every case it shall be the duty of the Warden to have the buildings compleated within 6. months from the date of his election.

5. It shall be the duty of the sd Visitors to seek and to employ for every ward, whenever the number and ages of it’s children require it, a person of good moral character, qualified to teach reading, writing, numeral arithmetic, and the elements of geography, whose subsistence shall be furnished by the residents & proprietors of the ward, either in money or in kind, at the choice of each contributor, and in the ratio of their public taxes, to be apportioned and levied as on the failures before provided for. the teacher shall also have the use of the house and accomodations provided for him, and shall moreover recieve annually such standing wages as the Visitors shall have determined, to be proportioned on the residents and proprietors of the ward, and to be paid,1 levied, and applied as before provided in other cases of pecuniary contribution:

6. At this school shall be recieved and instructed gratis every infant in the ward, of competent age who has not already had three years schooling< : and it is declared and enacted that no person unborn, or under the age of 12. years at the passing of this act, and who is compos mentis, shall, after the age of 15. years be a citizen of this commonwealth, until he or she can read readily printed characters in some tongue native or acquired. > .

7. And to keep up a constant succession of Visitors, the judge of the superior court of every county shall, at his first session in every bissextile year, appoint Visitors, as before characterised, either the same or others at his discretion, and, in case of the death or resignation of any visitor, during the term of his appointment, or of his removal from the county, or by the sd judge for good cause moral or physical, he shall appoint another to serve until the next bissextile appointment: which Visitors shall have their first meeting at their courthouse, on the county court day next ensuing their appointment and afterwards at such times and places as themselves or any two of them, with reasonable notice to the third, shall agree: but the election of Wardens shall be annually at the first meeting of the ward after the month of March until which election the warden last elected shall continue in office.

8. All ward meetings shall be at their schoolhouse, and on failure of the meeting of a majority of the warders on the call of a visitor, or of their warden, such visitor or warden may call another meeting.

9. At all times when repairs or alterations of the buildings before provided for shall be wanting, it shall be the duty of the Warden, or of a Visitor, to call a ward meeting, and to take the same measures towards such repairs or alterations as herein before authorised for the original buildings.

10. Where, on the application of any Warden, authorised thereto by the vote of his ward, the judge of the Superior court shall be of opinion that the Contributors of any particular ward are disproportionately & oppressively overburthened with an unusual number of children of non-contributors of their ward, he may direct an order to the county court to assess in their next county levy the whole or such part of the extra burthen as he shall think excessive and unreasonable, to be paid to the warden, for it’s proper use, to which order the sd county court is required to conform.

11. The sd teachers shall in all things relating to the education and government of their pupils, be under the direction and controul of the visitors< : but no religious reading, instruction or exercise shall be prescribed or practised inconsistent with the tenets of any religious sect or denomination. > .

12. Some one of the Visitors, once in every year at least, shall visit the schools, shall enquire into the proceedings and practices thereat, shall examine the progress of the pupils, and give to those who excel in reading, in writing, in arithmetic, or in geography, such honorary marks, and testimonies of approbation as may encorage & excite to industry & emulation.

13. All decisions and proceedings of the Visitors relative to the original designation of wards, at any time before the buildings are begun, or to the changes of wards at any time after, to the quantum of subsistence or wages allowed to the teacher, and to the rules prescribed to him for the education and government of his pupils shall be subject to controul and correction by the judge of the superior court of the county on the complaint of any individual aggrieved or interested.2

And for the establishment of Colleges whereat the youth of the Commonwealth may within convenient distances from their homes recieve a higher grade of education,

14. Be it further enacted as follows. the several counties of this Commonwealth shall be distributed into 9. Collegiate districts whereof one shall be composed of the counties of Accomac, Northampton, Northumberland, Lancaster, Richmond, Westmoreland, Middlesex, Essex, Matthews, Gloucester, King & Queen, King William, Elizabeth city, Warwick, York, James city New Kent & Charles city: one other of the counties of Princess Anne, Norfolk, Norfolk borough Nansemond, Isle of Wight, Southampton, Surry, Prince George, Sussex & Greensville: one other of the counties of Fairfax, Loudon, King George, Stafford, Prince William, Fauquier, Culpeper, Madison Caroline & Spotsylvania: one other of the counties of Hanover, Henrico, city of Richmond, Goochland, Louisa, Fluvanna, Powhatan, Cumberland, Buckingham, Orange, Albemarle, Nelson, Amherst, Augusta & Rockbridge: One other of the counties of Chesterfield, Petersburg, Dinwiddie, Brunswick, Amelia, Nottoway, Lunenburg, Mecklenburg, Prince Edward, Charlotte & Halifax: One other of the counties of Campbell, Pittsylvania, Bedford, Franklin, Henry, Patrick, Botetourt & Montgomery: One other of the counties of Frederic, Jefferson, Berkley, Hampshire, Shenandoah, Hardy, Rockingham & Pendleton: One other of the counties of Monongalia, Brooke, Ohio, Randolph, Harrison, Wood & Mason: and One other of the counties of Bath, Greenbriar, Kanhaway, Cabell, Giles, Monroe, Tazewell, Wythe, Grayson, Washington, Russell & Lee.

15. Within 3. months after the passing of this act the President & Directors of the literary fund, who shall henceforward be called the Board of public instruction, shall appoint one fit person in every county of each of the districts, who, with those appointed in the other counties of the same district shall compose the board of Visitors for the college of that district, & shall within 4. months after passing this act cause notice to be given to each individual so appointed, prescribing to them a day, within one month thereafter, & a place within their district for their 1 st meeting, with supplementory instructions for procuring a meeting subsequently in the event of failure at the time first appointed.

16. The sd Visitors or so many of them as, being a majority, shall attend, shall appoint a Rector of their own body who shall preside at their meetings, & a Secretary to record & preserve their proceedings, and shall proceed to consider of the site for a College most convenient for their district, having regard to extent, population & other circumstances, & within the term of 6. months from the passing of this act shall report the same to the sd board of public instruction, with the reasons on which such site is preferred & if any minority of two or more members prefer any other place, the same shall be reported with the reasons for & against the same.

17. Within 7. months after the passing of this act the sd board of public instruction shall determine on such of the sites reported as they shall think most eligible for the College of each district, shall notify the same to the sd visitors, and shall charge them with the office of obtaining from the proprietor, with his consent, the proper grounds for the buildings, and it’s appurtenances, either by donation or purchase, or if his consent on reasonable terms, cannot be obtained, the clerk of the county, wherein the site is, shall, on their request, issue & direct to the sheriff of the same county a writ of Ad quod damnum , to ascertain by a jury the value of the grounds selected, & to fix their extent by metes & bounds, so however as not to include the dwelling house, or buildings appurtenant, the curtilage, gardens or orchards of the owner which writ shall be executed according to the ordinary forms prescribed by the laws in such cases, and shall be returned to the same clerk to be recorded. provided that in no case either of purchase or valuation by a jury shall more grounds be located than of the value of 500. Dollars which grounds, if by donation or purchase shall, by the deed of the owner, or if by valuation of a jury, shall, by their inquest,3 become vested in the sd board of public instruction, as trustees for the Commonwealth, & for the uses & purposes of a College of instruction.

18. On each of the sites so located shall be erected one or more substantial buildings the walls of which shall be of brick or stone, with 2. schoolrooms & 4. rooms for the accomodation of the Professors, and with 16. dormitories in or adjacent to the same, each sufficient for 2. pupils, and in which no more than two shall be permitted to lodge, with a fireplace in each, & the whole in a comfortable & decent style suitable to their purpose.

19. The plan of the sd buildings & their appurtenances shall be furnished or approved by the sd board of public instruction, & that of the dormitories shall be such as may conveniently recieve additions from time to time. the Visitors shall have all the powers which are necessary & proper for carrying them into execution & shall proceed in their execution accordingly. Provided that in no case shall the whole cost of the sd buildings & appurtenances of any one College 4 exceed the sum of 7500. Dollars.

20. The College of the district first in this act described, to wit, of Accomac E t c shall be called the Wythe College, or college of the district of Wythe that of the 2 d description to wit Princess Anne E t c shall be called the

that of the 3 d description, to wit Fairfax E t c shall be called the

that of the 4 th description, to wit Hanover E t c shall be called the

that of the 5 th description, to wit Chesterfield E t c shall be called the

that of the 6 th description to wit Campbell E t c shall be called the

that of the 7 th description, to wit Frederick E t c shall be called the

that of the 8 th description, to wit, Monongalia E t c shall be called the

& that of the 9 th description, to wit, Bath E t c. shall be called the

21. In the sd Colleges shall be taught the Greek, Latin, French, Spanish, Italian & German languages, English grammar, geography antient & modern, the higher branches of numerical arithmetic, the mensuration of land, the use of the globes, & the ordinary elements of navigation.

22. To each of the sd Colleges shall be appointed two Professors, the one for teaching Greek, Latin, & such other branches of learning before prescribed as he may be qualified to teach, & the other for the remaining branches thereof, who shall each be allowed the use of the apartments provided for him, & a standing salary of 500.D. yearly, to be drawn from the literary fund, with such tuition fees from each pupil as the Visitors shall establish.

23. The sd Visitors shall be charged with the preservation & repair of the buildings, the care of the ground & appurtenances, for which, & other necessary purposes, they may employ a steward & competent laborers, they shall have power to appoint & remove the Professors, to prescribe their duties, & the course of education to be pursued

they shall establish rules for the government & discipline of the pupils, for their subsistence, & board, if boarded in the college, & for their accomodation, & the charges to which they shall be subject for the same, as well as the rent for the dormitories they occupy.

they may draw from the literary fund such monies as are hereby charged on it for their institution.

and in general they shall direct & do all matters & things which, not being inconsistent with the laws of the land, to them shall seem most expedient for promoting the purposes of the sd institution: which several functions may be exercised by them in the form of bye-laws, rules, resolutions, orders, instructions, or otherwise as they shall deem proper.

24. The rents of the dormitories, the profits of boarding the pupils, donations & other occasional resources shall constitute the fund, & shall be at their disposal for the necessary purposes of the sd institution not otherwise provided for, & they shall have authority to draw on the sd board of public instruction for the purchase or valuation money of the site of their college, for the cost of the buildings & improvements authorised by law, & for the standing salaries of the Professors herein allowed, for the administration of all which they may appoint a Burser.

25. They shall have two stated meetings in the year, at their colleges on the first Mondays of April & October, & occasional meetings at the same place & at such other times as they shall appoint, giving due notice thereof to every individual of their board.

26. A majority of them shall constitute a Quorum for business, & on the death or resignation of a member, or on his removal by the board of public instruction, or out of the county from which he was appointed, the sd board shall appoint a successor resident in the same county.

27. The Visitors of every Collegiate district shall be a body politic & corporate, to be called the Visitors of the college, by name, for which they are appointed, with capacity to plead or be impleaded in all courts of justice, and in all cases interesting to their college, which may be the subject of legal cognisance & jurisdiction, which pleas shall not abate by the determination of the office of all or any of them, but shall stand revived in the name of their successors, and they shall be capable in law, & in trust for their College, of recieving subscriptions & donations real & personal, as well from bodies corporate, or persons associated as from private individuals.

28. Some member or members of the board of Visitors, to be nominated by the sd board, or such other person as they shall nominate shall, once in every year at least, visit the college of their district, enquire into the proceedings & practices thereat, examine the progress of the pupils, & give to those who excel in any branch of learning prescribed for the sd college, such honorary marks & testimonies of approbation as may encorage or excite to industry & emulation.

29. The decisions & proceedings of the sd Visitors shall be subject to controul & correction by the board of public instruction, either on the complaint of any individual aggrieved or interested, or on the proper motion of the sd board.

30. On every 29 th day of February, or, if that be Sunday, then on the next or earliest day thereafter on which a meeting can be effected, the board of public instruction shall be in session, & shall appoint in every county of each district a visitor resident therein, either the same before appointed, or another, at their discretion, to serve until the ensuing 29 th day of February, duly & timely notifying to them their appointment, & prescribing a day for their 1 st meeting at the College of their district, after which their stated meetings shall be at their college on the 1 st Mondays of April & October annually, & their occasional5 meetings at the same place & at such times as themselves shall appoint, due notice thereof being given to every member of their board.6

Utrum horum?7
And for establishing in a central and healthy part of the state an University wherein all the branches of useful science may be taught, Be it further enacted as follows. And for establishing in a central and healthy part of the state an University wherein all the branches of useful science may be taught, Be it further enacted as follows.
31. Within the limits of the county of there shall be established an University, to be called the University of Virginia & so soon as may be after the passage of this act the Board of public instruction shall appoint 8. fit persons to constitute the board of Visitors for the sd University & shall forthwith give notice to each individual so appointed, prescribing to them a day for their first meeting at the courthouse of the sd county, with supplementory instructions for procuring a meeting subsequently in the event of failure at the time first appointed. 32. The sd Visitors, or so many of them as, being a majority, shall attend, shall appoint a Rector of their own body who shall preside at their meetings, and a Secretary to record & preserve their proceedings, & shall proceed to enquire into, and select the most eligible site for the University, and to obtain from the proprietor, with his consent, the proper grounds for the buildings and appurtenances, either by donation or purchase or, if his consent on reasonable terms cannot be obtained the clerk of the county shall, on their request, issue and direct to the sheriff of the county a writ of Ad quod damnum to ascertain by a jury the value of the grounds selected, & to fix their extent by metes and bounds, so however as not to include the dwelling house, or buildings appurtenant, the curtilage gardens or orchards of the owner which writ shall be executed according to the ordinary forms prescribed by the laws in such cases, and shall be returned to the same clerk to be recorded. Provided that in no case, either of purchase, or valuation by a jury, shall more grounds be located than of the value of 2000.D. which grounds, if by donation or purchase shall by the deed of the owner, or if by valuation of a jury, shall by their inquest, become vested in the board of public instruction aforesd, as trustees for the Commonwealth for the uses & purposes of an University. 31. Whensoever the Visitors of the Central college in Albemarle, authorise d thereto by the consent in writing of the subscribers of the major part of the amount subscribed to that institution, shall convey or cause to be conveyed to the board of public instruction, for the use of this commonwealth, all the lands buildings, property and rights of the sd College, in possession, in interest, or in action, (save only so much as may discharge their engagements then existing) the same shall be thereupon vested in this commonwealth, and shall be appropriated to the institution of an University to be called the University of Virginia, which shall be established on the sd lands. the sd board of public instruction shall thereupon forthwith appoint 8. fit persons who shall compose the board of Visitors for the government of the sd University, notifying thereof the persons so appointed, & prescribing to them a day for their 1 st meeting at Charlottesville, with supplementory instructions for procuring a meeting subsequently in the event of failure at the time first appointed. 32. The sd visitors, or so many of them as, being a majority, shall attend, shall [appoint] 8 a Rector of their own body to preside at their meetings, and a Secretary to record and preserve their proceedings, and shall proceed to examine into the state of the property conveyed as aforesd shall make an inventory of the same, specifying the items whereof it consists, shall notice the buildings and other improvements already made, & those which are in progress, shall take measures for their completion, shall consider what others may be necessary in addition and of the best plan for effecting the same, with estimates of the probable cost, and shall make report of the whole to the sd board of public instruction, which is authorised to approve, negative or modify any of the measures so proposed by the sd Visitors.
33. A plan of the buildings and appurtenances necessary & proper for an University being furnished or approved by the sd board of public instruction in which that of the dormitories shall be such as may conveniently admit additions from time to time, the Visitors shall have all the powers which shall be necessary and proper for carrying them into execution, and shall proceed in their execution accordingly. 33. The sd measures being approved or modified, the Visitors shall have all the powers relative thereto which shall be necessary or proper for carrying them into execution, and shall proceed in their execution accordingly.

34. In the sd University shall be taught History and Geography antient and modern, natural philosophy, agriculture, chemistry & the theories of medecine Anatomy, Zoology, Botany, Mineralogy and Geology Mathematics pure and mixed, military and naval science Ideology, Ethics, the Law of nature and nations, Law municipal & foreign, the science of civil government and Political economy Languages, Rhetoric Belles lettres, and the fine arts generally: which branches of science shall be so distributed, and under so many professorships, not exceeding ten, as the Visitors shall think most proper.

35. Each professor shall be allowed the use of the apartments and accomodations provided for him, and such standing salary, not exceeding 1000.D. yearly as the Visitors shall think proper to be drawn from the literary fund, with such tuition fees from each9 student as the visitors shall establish.

36. The said Visitors shall be charged with the erection, preservation and repair of the buildings, the care of the grounds and appurtenances, and of the interests of the University generally: they shall have power

to appoint a Burser, employ a Steward and all other necessary agents

to appoint and remove Professors

to prescribe their duties, and the course of education to be pursued

to establish rules for the government and discipline of the Students, for their subsistence, board and accomodation, if boarded by the University, and the charges to which they shall be subject for the same, as well as for the dormitories they occupy

to prescribe and controul the duties and proceedings of all officers, servants & others, with respect to the buildings, lands, appurtenances, & other property and interests of the University

to draw from the literary fund such monies as are hereby charged on it for this institution

and in general to direct and do all matters & things which, not being inconsistent with the laws of the land, to them shall seem most expedient for promoting the purposes of the sd institution which several functions may be exercised by them in the form of bye-laws, rules resolutions, orders, instructions, or otherwise as they shall deem proper.

37. They shall have two stated meetings in the year, to wit on the 1 st Mondays of April & October, & occasional meetings at such other times as they shall appoint, due notice thereof being given to every individual of their board, which meetings shall be at the sd University. a majority of them shall constitute a quorum for business & on the death or resignation of a member, or on his removal by the board of public instruction, or change of habitation to a greater than his former distance from the university, the sd board shall appoint a successor.

38. The Visitors of the sd University shall be a body politic & corporate under the style and title of the Visitors of ‘the University of Virginia,’ with capacity to plead or be impleaded in all courts of justice, & in all cases interesting to their college, which may be the subjects of legal cognisance and jurisdiction, which pleas shall not abate by the determination of their office but shall stand revived in the name of their successors & they shall be capable in law, & in trust for their college, of recieving subscriptions & donations, real & personal, as well from bodies corporate, or persons associated, as from private individuals.

39. Some member or members of the board of Visitors, to be nominated by the sd board, or such other person as they shall nominate shall, once in every year at least, visit the sd University, enquire into the proceedings & practices thereat, examine the progress of the students, and give to those who excel in any branch of science there taught such honorary marks & testimonies of approbation as may encorage & excite to industry & emulation.

40. All decisions & proceedings of the sd Visitors shall be subject to controul & correction by the board of public instruction, either on the complaint of any individual aggrieved or interested or on the proper motion of the sd board.

41. On every 29 th day of Feb. or, if that be Sunday, then on the next or earliest day thereafter on which a meeting can be effected, the sd board of public instruction shall be in session, & shall appoint Visitors for the sd University, either the same or others, at their discretion, to serve until the 29 th day of Feb. next ensuing, duly & timely notifying to them their appointment, & prescribing a day for their 1 st meeting at the University, after which their stated meetings shall be on the 1 st Mondays of April & Oct. annually, and their occasional meetings at the same place, and at such times as themselves shall appoint, due notice thereof being given to every member10 of their board.

Note, if the Central college be adopted for the University, the following section may be added.

Provided that nothing in this act contained shall suspend the proceedings of the Visitors of the sd Central College of Albemarle but, for the purpose of expediting the objects of the sd institution, they shall be authorised, under the controul of the board of public instruction, to continue the exercise of their functions until the 1 st meeting of the Visitors of the University.11

And to avail the Commonwealth of those talents and virtues which nature has sown as liberally among the poor as rich, and which are lost to their country by the want of means for their cultivation, Be it further enacted as follows.

42. On every 29 th day of February, or if that be Sunday, then on the next day, the Visitors of the Ward schools in every county shall meet at the courthouse of their county, and after the most diligent and impartial observation and enquiry of the boys who have been three years at the Ward schools, & whose parents are too poor to give them a Collegiate education, shall select from among them some one of the most promising and sound understanding, who shall be sent to the first meeting of the Visitors of the ir Collegiate district, with such proofs as the case requires and admits, for the examination & information of that board who from among the candidates so offered from the several counties of their district shall select two of the most sound & promising understanding, who shall be admitted to their College, & there be maintained & educated 5. years at the public expence, under such Rules and limitations as the board of public instruction shall prescribe: and at the end of the sd 5 years the sd Collegiate Visitors shall select that one of the two who shall, on their most diligent and impartial enquiry & best information be adjudged by them to be of the most sound & promising understanding & character, and most improved by their course of education, who shall be sent on immediately thereafter to the University, there to be maintained & educated in such branches of the sciences taught there as are most proper to qualify him for the calling to which his parents or guardians may destine him & to continue at the sd University 3. years at the public expense, under such rules & limitations as the board of public instruction shall prescribe. and the expenses of the persons so to be publicly maintained and educated at the Colleges and University shall be drawn by their respective Visitors from the literary fund.12

Estimate of the expenses, gross and annual of the sums in gross Annual.
University the Colleges and the public students
9. Colleges.
land 500. D × 9. 4,500 .
buildings 7342.D. × 9. 67,500 13
18. professors @ 500.D. 9,000
18. foundationers 5. years @ 250. D will average 5,625.
University. land 2,000
buildings E t c 10. Pavilions & 200. dormitories @ 7,500.D 75,000
10. Professors @ 1000.D. 10,000
9. foundationers 3. years @ 300. D will average 2,025
Philosophical apparatus and library annually 1,000
149,000 27,650
the gross sum which @ 6. p.cent will yield 27,650.D. is 460,083
Capital necessary for the whole system of education. 609,083 14
deduct the funds of the Central college if adopted, about 60,000
549,083

bissextile year: “leap year” ( OED description begins James A. H. Murray, J. A. Simpson, E. S. C. Weiner, and others, eds., The Oxford English Dictionary , 2d ed., 1989, 20 vols. description ends ). A writ of ad quod damnum is used to direct “the sheriff to inquire of jurors under oath to what damage a grant (as of a fair, market, liberty, or other franchise) would be to various people if the king were to make the grant” ( Black’s Law Dictionary description begins Bryan A. Garner and others, eds., Black’s Law Dictionary , 7th ed., 1999 description ends ). utrum horum: “Which of these?” mixed is another term for applied mathematics ( OED description begins James A. H. Murray, J. A. Simpson, E. S. C. Weiner, and others, eds., The Oxford English Dictionary , 2d ed., 1989, 20 vols. description ends ).


Thomas Jefferson Ran A Kingdom Of Slaves

Wikimedia Commons Jefferson’s notorious estate in Virginia today.

In the early part of his political career, Jefferson described the African slave trade as “moral depravity” and a “hideous blot” on the country. He was one of the very few founders who could be relied upon to push back against the interests of slave-holding Virginians throughout the 1780s.

All of that changed, of course, when he realized the financial benefit of free enforced labor. Jefferson, like most white men of any means in his time, was a slave owner. His Monticello estate, a private mountain-based Virginia plantation, housed around 130 slaves at its peak.

Jefferson grew quiet about the immorality of slavery in the 1790s, and in total, forced an estimated 600 people to work for him. 400 of them were born at Monticello.

Jefferson fashioned the estate into a miniature town entirely run on slave labor. The work on Monticello included blacksmithing, woodworking, textiles, farming, and more. Its main hub of operations was a nail factory, the profitability of which Jefferson boasted about in numerous letters.

Flickr Jefferson punished child slaves who didn’t make enough nails by cutting their food rations.

The plantation’s annual grocery bill was around $500, but the nail factory amassed that amount in a couple of months. Besides its profitability, the nail factory was a breeding ground for child slaves. Jefferson would put enslaved children to work in the factory to determine who did well and deserved extra food rations, and who didn’t.

Those who made 10,000 nails per day received extra privileges including food, leisure time, and uniforms, while those made fewer than 5,000 per day were whipped, made to work in rags, and given less to eat. The promising children were apprenticed for skilled labor 16 — the rest were forced to keep working or moved to the fields.

Thomas Jefferson’s treatment of slaves, whose ancestors were stolen and shipped to a New World of forced labor, has been glossed over as recently as 1941. In a Jefferson biography of that year written for “young adults” the author described Monticello as “a beehive of industry” where:

“No discord or revilings found entrance: there were no signs of discontent on the black shining faces as they worked under the direction of their master… The women sang at their tasks and the children old enough to work made nails leisurely, not too overworked for a prank now and then.”


Slavery and racism of Thomas Jefferson

Even before his departure from France, Jefferson had overseen the publication of Notes on the State of Virginia. This book, the only one Jefferson ever published, was part travel guide, part scientific treatise, and part philosophical meditation. Jefferson had written it in the fall of 1781 and had agreed to a French edition only after learning that an unauthorized version was already in press. Notes contained an extensive discussion of slavery, including a graphic description of its horrific effects on both blacks and whites, a strong assertion that it violated the principles on which the American Revolution was based, and an apocalyptic prediction that failure to end slavery would lead to “convulsions which will probably never end but in the extermination of one or the other race.” It also contained the most explicit assessment that Jefferson ever wrote of what he believed were the biological differences between blacks and whites, an assessment that exposed the deep-rooted racism that he, like most Americans and almost all Virginians of his day, harboured throughout his life.

To his critics in later generations, Jefferson’s views on race seemed particularly virulent because of his purported relationship with Sally Hemings, who bore several children obviously fathered by a white man and some of whom had features resembling those of Jefferson. The public assertion of this relationship was originally made in 1802 by a disreputable journalist interested in injuring Jefferson’s political career. His claim was corroborated, however, by one of Hemings’s children in an 1873 newspaper interview and then again in a 1968 book by Winthrop Jordan revealing that Hemings became pregnant only when Jefferson was present at Monticello. Finally, in 1998, DNA samples were gathered from living descendants of Jefferson and Hemings. Tests revealed that Jefferson was almost certainly the father of some of Hemings’s children. What remained unclear was the character of the relationship—consensual or coercive, a matter of love or rape, or a mutually satisfactory arrangement. Jefferson’s admirers preferred to consider it a love affair and to see Jefferson and Hemings as America’s preeminent biracial couple. His critics, on the other hand, considered Jefferson a sexual predator whose eloquent statements about human freedom and equality were hypocritical.

In any case, coming as it did at the midpoint of Jefferson’s career, the publication of Notes affords the opportunity to review Jefferson’s previous and subsequent positions on the most volatile and therefore most forbidden topic in the revolutionary era. Early in his career Jefferson had taken a leadership role in pushing slavery onto the political agenda in the Virginia assembly and the federal Congress. In the 1760s and ’70s, like most Virginia planters, he endorsed the end of the slave trade. (Virginia’s plantations were already well stocked with slaves, so ending the slave trade posed no economic threat and even enhanced the value of the existent slave population.) In his original draft of the Declaration of Independence, he included a passage, subsequently deleted by the Continental Congress, blaming both the slave trade and slavery itself on George III. Unlike most of his fellow Virginians, Jefferson was prepared to acknowledge that slavery was an anomaly in the American republic established in 1776. His two most practical proposals came in the early 1780s: a gradual emancipation scheme by which all slaves born after 1800 would be freed and their owners compensated, and a prohibition of slavery in all the territories of the West as a condition for admission to the Union. By the time of the publication of Notes, then, Jefferson’s record on slavery placed him among the most progressive elements of southern society. Rather than ask how he could possibly tolerate the persistence of slavery, it is more historically correct to wonder how this member of Virginia’s planter class had managed to develop such liberal convictions.

Dating the onset of a long silence is inevitably an imprecise business, but by the time of his return to the United States in 1789 Jefferson had backed away from a leadership position on slavery. The ringing denunciations of slavery presented in Notes had generated controversy, especially within the planter class of Virginia, and Jefferson’s deep aversion to controversy made him withdraw from the cutting edge of the antislavery movement once he experienced the sharp feelings it aroused. Moreover, the very logic of his argument in Notes exposed the inherent intractability of his position. Although he believed that slavery was a gross violation of the principles celebrated in the Declaration of Independence, he also believed that people of African descent were biologically inferior to whites and could never live alongside whites in peace and harmony. They would have to be transported elsewhere, back to Africa or perhaps the Caribbean, after emancipation. Because such a massive deportation was a logistical and economic impossibility, the unavoidable conclusion was that, though slavery was wrong, ending it, at least at present, was inconceivable. That became Jefferson’s public position throughout the remainder of his life.

It also shaped his personal posture as a slave owner. Jefferson owned, on average, about 200 slaves at any point in time, and slightly over 600 over his lifetime. To protect himself from facing the reality of his problematic status as plantation master, he constructed a paternalistic self-image as a benevolent father caring for what he called “my family.” Believing that he and his slaves were the victims of history’s failure to proceed along the enlightened path, he saw himself as the steward for those entrusted to his care until a better future arrived for them all. In the meantime, his own lavish lifestyle and all the incessant and expensive renovations of his Monticello mansion were wholly dependent on slave labour. Whatever silent thoughts he might have harboured about freeing his slaves never found their way into the record. (He freed only five slaves, all members of the Hemings family.) His mounting indebtedness rendered all such thoughts superfluous toward the end, because his slaves, like all his possessions, were mortgaged to his creditors and therefore not really his to free.


Thomas Jefferson and the Environment

Peter Ling argues that Thomas Jefferson’s ideas have had dramatic continent-wide effects on the landscape and ecology of the United States.

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Over two centuries since his presidency, most Americans still feel that Thomas Jefferson deserves not just his memorial on the Mall in Washington, D.C., but to have his face carved gigantically into the face of Mount Rushmore. Every year, tourists flock to the Virginian’s elegant mansion of Monticello and hear their guides describe Jefferson’s many talents as architect, botanist, inventor and violinist, not to mention politician. Jefferson himself listed three achievements for posterity: drafting the Declaration of Independence, securing freedom of religion under the law, and founding the University of Virginia. Of these, most people know simply the first. But arguably his botanical and agricultural ideas have had the most visible, widespread and long-lasting impact, for good or ill.

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Thomas Jefferson, Epidemics and His Vision for American Cities

The yellow fever epidemic of 1793 reinforced Thomas Jefferson's harsh views of city living, but also brought about plans to design new communities.

The yellow fever epidemic of 1793 in Philadelphia changed Thomas Jefferson’s thinking. Always anti-urban in his social outlook, the future president now began to formulate a radical plan for the development of new states and new communities west of the Appalachian mountains. In an age before antibiotics and systematic vaccination, Jefferson sought to design healthier communities on the tabula rasa, the blank slate, of the American heartland. Some but not all of Jefferson’s ideas were adopted as the American frontier moved west.

Jefferson lived through one of the most serious plagues in American history. The capital of the United States was located in Philadelphia in the 1790s while the new U.S. capital was being planned and laid out in the District of Columbia. Jefferson was serving (reluctantly) as America’s first secretary of state and lived in one of the suburbs of Philadelphia in the summer of 1793 when yellow fever swept through the capital.

With 50,000 residents, Philadelphia was the most populous city in the country at the time, and the second largest city of the English-speaking world. Between August 1 and mid-November, nearly 5,000 Philadelphians (one in 10) were killed by the epidemic. The citizens were, of course, terrified, partly because the cause of the epidemic was unknown, as was its method of transmission, and there was no effective treatment or cure.


Watch the video: Ashton Says Hes Tired of the Word Misogynistic Being Thrown Around. Below Deck After Show S7 E16 (July 2022).


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