This morning we took a lovely drive for an hour to our west. Our destination was lovely Charlottesville, Virginia. Of course, as everyone knows, named after Queen Charlotte, the wife of the least favorite King in America, George III. It is tied with Monticello, Ashlawn-Highland, and the University of Virginia. It is also linked with Montpelier.
Our first photos are in relation to Monticello. This was Amanda’s first trip, my second trip. This time had much more green for me to see which was a pleasant surprise. I will tell you now, the gardens are much more beautiful when they have something growing in them! We parked, purchased our tickets, and headed up the hill. We chose to walk rather than ride the shuttle. We arrived first at the Jefferson Cemetery which continues to bury Jefferson descendents. The next stop was the massive gardens. The tour manual boasts over 1000 feet of them. The Garden Pavilion you see in the photos is about half way. There are some great views from the garden area over the local area. Really quite beautiful.
We roamed up the hill and around the house. You can see various pictures from around the property. The striped fluffy tulips are something to mention. We even took a picture. We got some pictures from the well known Nickel view. We went on the tour at 12:40. I have always been impressed with Thomas Jefferson. Nearly everything in my knowledge of Jefferson has been of great influence on me. His focus of design in homes has been something that has impressed me since I started drafting in about 1992. I remember almost instantly learning about Jefferson’s views probably in my first month of drafting. I have been enamored every since. Anyhow, I won’t do an opinion piece on Jefferson here… The house is magnificent.
We came out, roamed some more and made our way back down the hill. We drive just another mile or two away to James and Elizabeth Monroe’s home, Highland. You will notice in the pictures that there is a yellow house attached to the white house. The white house is the original Highland. In later years the Victorian yellow house was added and the plantation came to be known as Ashlawn. Thomas Jefferson convinced James Monroe to buy a plantation near him which he did. It is important to mention Monroe owned several. In his over 50 years of office, he spent only about 4 years all together at Highland. His wife was frail in later years and they never made it back very often. Plus towards the end to settle all his debts he sold Highland. He died in New York City debt free. There is a massive tree there in the yard I wanted Amanda to go take a picture with. So we got to see one of her better sides in that photo.
We left our visit at Ashlawn-Highland to head back to Charlottesville. We stopped at the Thomas Jefferson Museum and then went to the University of Virginia. After a day at Monticello and hearing so much about it I had to see the original campus. You can see pictures of the Rotunda which is the focal point of the campus. You can see pictures from both sides of the Rotunda. We also took pictures both east and west from The Lawn. The Old Cabell building is seen to the west from The Lawn.
Lastly, I added a couple of pictures from our trip to Washington in March. There are some pictures from late one night of the Washington Temple, Washington Monument, and Jefferson Memorial.
It was a busy day. We even took a cooler of goodies to make ourselves lunch. Next time we need to pack more water though.