Thomas Jefferson's Poplar Forest.

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Franklin, Rachel
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Middle Tennessee State University
This thesis examines Jefferson's use of Poplar Forest, a secondary plantation located in Bedford County, Virginia. It explores the functional and symbolic roles of the plantation from 1774 to 1824. Jefferson gained Poplar Forest through inheritance from his wife's father, John Wayles. He used its land primarily to raise wheat and tobacco. After Jefferson retired from the presidency, workmen built a new, octagonal house on the property. Designed by Jefferson, this house represented his philosophy of architecture and the proper use of classical orders. Interior arrangement of space denoted Jefferson's purpose for his Bedford house as a comfortable, private dwelling.
Jefferson deeded the property to his grandson, Francis Wayles Eppes, in 1824. Eppes sold the plantation in 1828, two years after his grandfather's death. Subsequent owners valued the property's historic ties to Thomas Jefferson. Their care of Poplar Forest guaranteed the survival of this national landmark and historical resource.
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