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President John F. Kennedy recognized Jefferson's accomplishments when he told a gathering of American Nobel Prize winners that they were the greatest assemblage of talent in the White House since Jefferson had dinner there alone.

This is the floorplan for the interior of Monticello. I don't have pictures of all the rooms, but I think you'll enjoy the ones that are here.

We'll just walk up this path and go right in the front door. Come on, now. You'll like what you see, and you'll get an idea of what President Kennedy meant by his words above.

We don't have a photograph of the Octagonal Room (number 1 on the floor plan) but this drawing will suffice. Purpose of Room: Bedroom and possibly a sitting room, used frequently by James and Dolley Madison. Architectural features: Alcove bed with a closet overhead; based on one of Jefferson's favorite architectural shapes, the octagon; one closet is shaped as a triangle to complete the octagon; triple-sash windows, used in many rooms on the first floor, served both as a doorway and a ventilation device; interior shutters are used throughout the first floor for privacy and insulation

This is the North Square Room (number 2 on the floorplan) This room is not usually shown on tours, except during special winter tours. Purpose of Room: Bedroom, used frequently by the Portuguese scholar Abbé José Correia da Serra.

Here we have the Great Entrance Hall (number 3 on the floorplan) Purpose of Room: Reception area and waiting room for visitors; a museum of American natural history, western civilization, and Native American cultures. Architectural Features: Balcony connects two mezzanine-level wings; green floorcloth; ceiling pattern features eagle and stars pattern.

Number 4 on the floorplan is the South Square Room. This was used as a breakfast room.


This is Jefferson's "Sanctum Sanctorum", his library (number 5 on the floorplan). Jefferson was quoted as saying "I could not live without books." Purpose of Room: Held Jefferson's libraries, the largest of which consisted of more than 6,000 books and was sold to Congress in 1815 after its building and collection were damaged by the British in 1814, forming the nucleus of the Library of Congress.

Number 6 on the floorplan is the Greenhouse. It is adjacent to Jefferson's Cabinet (study) and provided him with a welcome diversion from writing. There he kept plants such as oranges and Mimosa, and the Greenhouse may also have housed the pet mockingbirds that Jefferson brought home to Monticello from the President's House. The Greenhouse also held a set of tools and a workbench, on which, one visitor noted, "Mr. Jefferson was fond of exercising himself in mechanical employments."

Number 7 on the floorplan is the Dining Room. Jefferson had dumbwaiters built into both sides of the fireplace so wine could be lifted from the wine cellar to the dining room.

Room number 8 on the floorplan is the parlor. We have no picture so will use the drawing again. Purpose of Room: Games, music, reading, and a center of social activity. The room displayed much of Jefferson's art collection and was site to weddings, dances, and christenings.


Number 9 on the floorplan is the opposite entrance hall. No photos available. Number 10 is Jefferson's bedroom. Jefferson saw alcove beds while he was in France, and incorporated them into Monticello. The other beds in the house are built into walls, but Jefferson's bed is open on both sides, connecting his Bed Room and his Cabinet. As one guest wrote, "The President had his Bed placed in a Door way."

The final room we have to show you is number 11 on the floorplan - Jefferson's Cabinet (or study). Purpose of Room: Office for reading, writing, architectural drafting, and scientific observation. Unusual architectural features: Part of a "suite" of Jefferson's private rooms, along with the Book Room, Greenhouse, and Bedroom; adjoins Jefferson's Bedroom via a passage and an alcove bed open on both sides; plan based on an octagon, a favored architectural shape for Jefferson.


This concludes our tour of Monticello.

Jefferson had long been troubled by debt, and the failure of a friend whose note he had endorsed brought him to virtual bankruptcy. But he was rich in honor, friendship, and domestic happiness when he died at Monticello on July 4, 1826 just hours before John Adams, and, ironically, on the 50th anniversary of the Declaration of Independence.

To see some accomplishments of this remarkable man who was years ahead of his time

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