In July of 2017, we traveled to Charlottesville, Virginia and headed up to the top of the mountain to visit the former home of the author of the Declaration of Independence and the third President of the United States, Thomas Jefferson.
The main goal of our trip to Virginia was to visit Monticello. Not only were we aware of the paranormal activity of this interesting home, but the history that lie within the walls is an amazing collection documenting the works of a man who was not only a founding father but a diplomat, lawyer, architect, philosopher. Monticello is located at 931 Thomas Jefferson Pkwy, Charlottesville, VA 22902.
Once we arrived at the visitor center, we had to purchase tickets and travel by van to the top of the mountain to see the home. When we came back down to the visitor center, we spent some time walking around seeing some of the artifacts that belonged to Jefferson and of course there is a gift shop. We purchased a few things (which you can see in our collection database) to help support the ongoing restoration efforts of the complex.
When you arrive at the house, there are timed tours to go inside. You are able to spend some time walking around the outside of the building, visiting the gardens and some of the other structures while you wait to take the tour of the house. When we were there, there was an archeological dig going on at the area where the slave quarters were located. They were trying to find the foundation of the buildings so that they can be restored.
You can see some of customized items that were added to the structure based on Jefferson's plans. One of which is the large cistern that was added so that the building and gardens did not run out of water. It is a massive structure, that is somewhat hidden architecturally; however, you can see some evidence of how it was designed. Jefferson was never finished making changes to his Monticello and was constantly working on plans and alterations to make life better or to develop some kind of process or system that would make operations of the home more efficient.
Next to the cistern is another section of the building that houses a little ice cream shop and some other rooms that contained some of Jefferson's inventions (or items he was working on), to help demonstrate to students who visit some of the works of Thomas Jefferson. This section of the building was once the stables.
If you would like to learn some more information about Monticello, you can watch our history and profile video that we produced below.
If you are interested in some of the paranormal activity that takes places within the building and on the grounds, we also produced a "Ghost Stories and Folklore" video about the Monticello.
Another thing I would like to point out about Monticello is that most people don't realize (actually we didn't either until we visited the home), is that the view you see most of Monticello, even on the back of a United States nickle is actually the back of the house. We believe that is is the most photographed part of the building due to the formal gardens and the dome. When you enter the building for the tour, you walk in through the front of the home.
One of the major drawbacks about our visit to Monticello was we were not allowed to take photos or video inside of the building. If you have been one of our #parapeeps for a while, you know how this bothers us, but I will not get into that now. It was just disappointing not being able to get some photos so we could remember the tour; however, we were able to get an audio recording. In the video below, you will hear the audio recording of the tour within Monticello.
If you have visited Monticello in the past, we would love to hear from you. Please be sure to leave us a message below and let us know about your experiences down in the comments section below.
Find out more about Shawn and Marianne Donley on our About Page.
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