Thomas Jefferson (1743-1826), was born on April 13, 1743, in Shadwell, Virginia. He was the principal author of the Declaration of Independence, the nation’s first Secretary of State under President George Washington from 1789-1794, second vice president of the United States under President John Adams from 1797-1803, and the third president of the United States serving two terms from 1801-1809. Following the end of his presidency, Jefferson remained at his home, Monticello, which he designed himself on a five thousand acre plantation near Charlottesville, Virginia. He also established the University of Virginia in 1819 in Charlottesville having secured its charter, designed its buildings, planned its curriculum, and served as the first rector. Thomas Jefferson died on July 4, 1826, at the age of eighty-three years old.