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The Boston Globe


Fall Travel: Weekend Getaways

Jefferson slept here

Our third president made the small city of Charlottesville, Virginia, a must-visit spot for lovers of history, architecture, and wine.

He started building Monticello in 1769.

Were it not for Jefferson, Charlottesville would be an unremarkable place — but thanks to him, it is anything but. Within a short drive of Jefferson’s home lie two other presidential estates — those of James Madison and James Monroe, both Jefferson proteges. Downtown, life is centered on the University of Virginia, which Jefferson founded a decade after his presidency, in 1819. Around Charlottesville, the rural landscape is dotted with wineries, which may also owe their existence to Jefferson, who developed a taste for wine while living in France in the 1780s and traveling extensively throughout Europe.

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