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Cornelia Jefferson Randolph (1799-1871) View Interactive Version ]

Born at Monticello on 26 July 1799, Cornelia Jefferson Randolph was the fifth child and third surviving daughter of Martha Jefferson Randolph and Thomas Mann Randolph. Like her siblings, Cornelia spent much of her time at Monticello and, as a young girl, accompanied her grandfather, Thomas Jefferson, on trips to his other home, Poplar Forest, where she occupied herself in studying. Artistically inclined, Cornelia learned mechanical drawing from her grandfather and practiced by creating renderings of architectural plans for the University of Virginia. Never marrying, Cornelia lived at Tufton and then Edgehill, the homes of her older brother, Thomas Jefferson Randolph. A school was established at Edgehill during the 1830s and 1840s to try to improve the family finances, and Cornelia taught drawing, painting, and sculpture. After the Civil War, Cornelia moved to Alexandria, Virginia, to live with two of her sisters at the home of her niece, Martha Jefferson Trist Burke. She died there on 24 February 1871.


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