Many miles from Poplar Forest, the Massachusetts Historical Society holds the nation’s largest collection of Jefferson’s private papers, known as the Coolidge Collection of Thomas Jefferson Manuscripts. Jefferson’s great-grandson Thomas Jefferson Coolidge presented the collection to the MHS in 1898.
Over the years, descendants of both Jefferson and Coolidge have added to the collection, including several of Jefferson’s architectural drawings and sketches. Among these drawings is an original Jefferson design for an entrance gate, which fits the form and style of his villa retreat.
Thanks to further exhaustive research conducted by Poplar Forest’s Director of Architectural Restoration, Travis McDonald, we’re now prepared to fabricate Jefferson’s design for the very first time, utilizing the exacting detail and period-appropriate craftsmanship familiar to Poplar Forest visitors. However, without your gift, this gate may never be built at all.
Please take a moment to make a donation online today. No matter the amount you’re able to give, your support will directly impact our ability to bring Jefferson’s original vision to life here at Poplar Forest.