Monticello

The Nickel Shot

Today was history day. We visited Thomas Jefferson’s mountain plantation, Monticello in Charlottesville. Pictured is the “Nickel Shot”, as seen on the back of old nickels. I did this tour fifty years ago and it seems different. After the house tour, which seemed about the same, we did the slave tour which I think is much newer. Jefferson throughout his life owned over six hundred people. He may have advocated abolition, but he was also a practicing slaveholder.

Then there was the Sally Hemings, his slave who had a number of his children. DNA testing now confirm that her offspring are part of the Jefferson family. Disclosures like these tend to cast shade on his notable achievements. We ate lunch there too.

Next stop was downtown Charlottesville. They have a pedestrian mall that we toured until thunderstorms chased us back to the car. We headed back towards the hotel and then crashed head-on into a Harry Potter festival. I felt like such a muggle there. We watched a quidditch game and almost had to use a port-a-Potter, while waiting for our table. After dinner it took us three tries to escape from the festival, because of blocked off streets, but we made it.

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