Red Hill and Poplar Forest

We visited Red Hill the place where Patrick Henry retired for the last five years of his life.

It was a modest home that showed his values of virtue, independence and family.  Henry delivered his most famous speech in March 1775 at St. John’s Church during the Second Virginia Convention. His words that day were the  call that led the colonies toward independence: “We must fight!” “Gentlemen may cry ‘peace, peace’ – but there is no peace.” “As for me, give me liberty or give me death.”   He was dedicated to his 17 children and 77 grandchildren and loved to spend time with them.

Poplar Forest, Vacation Home of Thomas JeffersonIn 1806 construction was started on perhaps the first octagonal house in America.  It was designed by Thomas Jefferson himself.  In this isolated retreat Jefferson combined new, ancient, European and American design elements.

Even the necessaries or out houses were octagonal.  Jefferson’s landscape design included mounds, which he also had added to the White House, from which to better view the home and provided symmetry and a sunken lawn.

Jefferson wrote, “No occupation is so delightful to me as the culture of the earth, and no culture comparable to that of a garden…But tho an old man, I am but a young gardener.”

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