We already brought you part one of our list of 15 things you probably did not know about Thomas Jefferson, and now we’re back with part two! Check out eight more fascinating facts about the founding father and historical figure that you definitely (probably) did not know below. You might be surprised by what you find out!
Number Eight: His Footprints Are Stained at Monticello. In Monticello, Jefferson’s estate in Virginia, visitors can see Jefferson’s real footprints! The footprints are stained on the floor next to where his bed is. The footprints came to be because every morning, Jefferson stuck his feet in ice cold water. Many people of the time believed sticking your feet in ice cold water when you get out of bed would help prevent colds.
Number Seven: He Was Never Done With Monticello. Though Monticello is regal and beautifully extravagant, Jefferson stated that he was never truly finished with it. In fact, one of his favorite hobbies was taking things apart and putting them back together in a different way in his home.
Number Six: He Is Frequently Misquoted. Jefferson never said the words, “Most bad government has grown out of too much government.” Most historians warn people that quoting Jefferson is often a bad idea because Jefferson rarely said what he meant.
Number Five: He Loved to Garden. Jefferson had several gardens on Mulberry Row, and he was an extremely attentive gardener. Most of the food that was served at Monticello came from his very own gardens, and Jefferson’s diet was mostly vegetarian because of this.
Number Four: He Was the United States’ First Ambassador to France. It’s no secret that Jefferson was a Francophile, and he was nearly fluent in French. His short move to France while the United States was developing earned him the title of our first ambassador to France.
Number Three: He Was Sneaky. Jefferson once convinced a friend to begin growing a vineyard just so he could get the free wine later on. The friend was Philip Mazzei, and the winery became Jefferson Vineyards. It still exists today!
Number Two: When People Thought He Was Sleeping, He Was Really Spying. Though many people at Senate meetings with Jefferson thought he slept through the whole meeting, in fact, he was spying on everybody. He kept his head on his desk so he could hear everything – his desk was at the perfect spot for the acoustics of everybody’s voices to get back to his ears.
Number One: He Wasn’t Too Excited to Be President. Jefferson only became President because it seemed like something he should be doing at the time. He never had a passion to pursue the presidency, and when his was over, he was excited to go back to Monticello. We hope you enjoyed our list of 15 things you didn’t know about Thomas Jefferson!