History of Thomas Jefferson

  • Thomas Jefferson's Birth

    Thomas Jefferson's Birth
    Thomas Jefferson is born in Shadwell, Virginia (later Albemarle County)
  • Jefferson goes to college

    Thomas Jefferson begins studying at the College of William & Mary.
  • Jefferson in the house of Burgesses

    Jefferson, now 25 years old, is elected to the Virginia House of Burgesses.
  • Jefferson in Congress

    Jefferson arrives in Philadelphia to replace his cousin as a Virginia delegate to the Second Continental Congress.
  • Declaration of Independence

    Jefferson, along with John Adams, Benjamin Franklin, and two others, is assigned to the committee charged with drafting what will become the Declaration of Independence.
  • Virginia House of Delegates

    Jefferson leaves the Congress and returns to Virginia to take a seat as a representative in the Virginia House of Delegates.
  • Governor of Virginia

    Jefferson is elected the second governor of Virginia.
  • Secretary of State

    Jefferson moves to New York, the nation's temporary capital, to take up his job as the United States' first secretary of state.
  • Vice-President

    As the runner-up in the presidential election, Jefferson becomes John Adams' vice president.
  • Alien and Sedition Acts

    Jefferson feels the acts to be unconscionable violations of basic rights, and works with Madison to author, in secret, a pair of protests, the Virginia and Kentucky Resolutions.
  • Louisiana Purchase

    Jefferson purchases the 800,000-square-mile Louisiana Territory from French Emperor Napoleon Bonaparte for $15 Million, or roughly 4 cents an acre, effectively doubling the size of the United States overnight.
  • Lewis and Clark Expedition

    Jefferson charters the Lewis and Clark expedition to survey the new Louisiana Territory.
  • Embargo Act

    Jefferson's embargo act halts all trade between the United States and Great Britain.
  • War of 1812

    Thomas Jefferson passes the Embargo Act to cancel all foreign connections.
  • THomas Jefferson's Death

    Thomas Jefferson dies in his bed in Monticello, on the same day as John Adams, fifty years to the day after the publication of the Declaration of Independence.