Finding Monticello

Before he went to Europe, Jefferson had built a house called Monticello, but it was boxy and domeless, nothing like the one you can see today. Hardly nickel-worthy. In Europe, he discovered a neoclassical style of architecture that he would bring back and adapt. I follow his guide to see some of his favorite buildings up close in both France and Italy. Nothing prepares us, though, for the hair-raising drive to the top of Jefferson’s favorite source for marble, the famed quarry of Carrara.

The Author

Derek Baxter graduated from the University of Virginia with a degree in history. He is writing a book about his experience following the route through Europe that Jefferson set out in Hints to Americans. After years of research, Derek made nine separate trips abroad on Jefferson's trail. 

 

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The Roman Theater of Orange, France

Jefferson was worried that they were tearing parts of it down and reusing the stone...but it survives.