Sunday, September 25, 2011

sept. 25, 1811 (wed.)

Time to look over the accounts and tally up what is owed to David Higginbottom & Co. in Milton. (Well, perhaps a bit past time. These are the outstanding debts from August of last year to August of this year.)

A plantation like Monticello is largely self-sufficient, but of course it's necessary to import iron and salt, and tropical products such as coffee, tea, sugar, and molasses. And some things such as candles, whiskey, and cloth for the slaves' clothing are more convenient to buy than make in the quantities needed.

Monday, September 19, 2011

september 19, 1811 (thurs.)

An annular solar eclipse was visible at Monticello a couple of days ago, on Tuesday, the 17th, the annulus (the bright ring of the sun around visible behind the moon) showing from 1:53 to about half minute past 1:59 in the afternoon, by Mr. Jefferson's slightly slow clock. Of course Mr. Jefferson went out to see it and of course he observed it carefully and took meticulous notes.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

september 11, 1811 (wed.)

The Rev. Charles Wingfield, a neighbor who is a Presbyterian minister, held a simple funeral -- a few short words and prayers -- for Mrs. Carr today at the cemetery at Monticello, just down the hill from the house.

This summer has been a rough one. In addition to Mrs. Carr's illness and death, Mrs. Randolph, who had spent three months at Edgehill, had been quite ill for awhile in July, then lost the baby she was carrying, and all of her children had been sick, too. Here at Monticello, Mr. Jefferson's rheumatism was so bad that he was nearly bedridden, and had to postpone what should have been an early July trip to Poplar Forest until mid August.

Let us hope that we have seen the last of these troubles for awhile.

Monday, September 5, 2011

september 5, 1811 (thurs.)

Martha Jefferson Carr was buried today in the family graveyard here at Monticello, just down the hill from the house, beside Dabney Carr, her husband, and good friend of her brother, Thomas. In fact, Mr. Carr was the first person to have been buried in that cemetery, back in 1773. Mrs. Carr's funeral will be at noon this coming Wednesday, the 11th, at the graveside.

Saturday, September 3, 2011

september 2, 1811 (tue.)

Martha Jefferson Carr, Thomas Jefferson's sister, of Carr's-brook, just north of Charlottesville, has died. She had been ill for the past couple of years, toward the end being bedridden, and eventually becoming completely unaware of her surroundings and not recognizing those caring for her. She was 65 years old, three years younger than her brother, Thomas. The two were quite close, and she had married his boyhood friend, Dabney Carr. When her husband died young, she moved with her children to Monticello. Sister Lucy died just last year, in Kentucky, and with Martha's passing, only three of the ten siblings from Shadwell remain: Thomas and the twins, Randolph and Anna.