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The Architecture of Monticello Is Simply Amazing

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Monticello, otherwise (and popularly) known as the little mountain, was designed and built by one Thomas Jefferson. Jefferson served as the third US president, and he lived in Monticello until his demise. The architecture behind Monticello is nothing but astonishing, and it shows just how fine an architect Jefferson was. The property was originally build on 5,000 acres in the Piedmont region near Charlottesville, Virginia. Over the years, the building has undergone numerous renovations from one owner to another. Today, the building is owned and maintained by Thomas Jefferson Foundation (TJF). TJF uses the building as a museum as well as an educational centre. Despite the many transformational changes Monticello has undergone, it still remains an important monumental landmark. It represents the personality of one of the greatest leaders in US history, servers as a historic site, and also a heritage site.

Monticello is an architectural masterpiece of its own, and it represents the architectural prowess of its designer. The house and all its sophistications represent the kind of person that was Jefferson. In fact, there is no single home for a president that depicts the personality of its owner in the manner in which Monticello depicted the personality of President Jefferson. Jefferson was a Renaissance staunch, and was one of the most important members of the US “founding fathers.” It is his disputes with people like Alexander Hamilton that bore bipartisan system in the US thereby creating two strong competing visions that created the US as is known today.

The complexities of Monticello are typical of the person Jefferson was. He was a sophisticated person, and was full of curiosity, many ideas, and utmost intelligence. He was also contradictory in the sense that he strongly believed and fought for human equality yet he owned close to 200 slaves (Cohen 503). The interior design of Monticello incorporated various examples of his ingenuity and sophistications. For example, there are disappearing beds, peculiar ventilation and lighting systems, folding doors, multipurpose bookshelves, and a clock built with extraordinary technology (Adams 15).

Monticello was surrounded by agricultural scenes all around. This depicts the value Jefferson attached to agriculture. He used his slaves to cultivate tobacco, wheat, and other mixed crops. The garden he created was not only a source of food, but also a botanical showpiece. He planted many ornamental crops that were used to lead research and development in various institutions. The agricultural nature of Jefferson depicted by Monticello was typical of his presidency. He strongly believed in the potential of agriculture in the US. For example, he is remembered for spearheading agrarian democracy (Griswold 657). Essentially, most of the things Jefferson stood for and represented were well incorporated in the designing of Monticello.

As an architect, his footprints in the world’s construction industry were represented by Monticello. His leadership, too, was seen in the way in which he ran his home. It will be recalled that he inherited the land in which Monticello is built at just 26, and dedicated his entire life to developing a spectacular view that would later remain such an important artefact in US history. As a staunch believer in the power of agriculture and food, he used his farm to set an example. He not only cultivated crops but also kept dairy animals. Thus, when he fought for improved agriculture, it was easy for Americans to believe him because they could actually see how he is good at it.

Monticello is historic. Architecturally, it represents the stages in which architecture has passed through in the US. The design of the buildings represents the architecture of that time. While in France, Jefferson was greatly wowed by the neoclassical architecture that was part of the French Revolution. He was influenced by the age of Enlightenment, and some of the observations he made contributed to designing the house. Andrea Palladio, an Italian Renaissance architect, was very influential to the design of the house. In fact, it is Palladio’s neoclassical design principles that Jefferson used to design the main house. He also integrated various designs from 18th-century Europe as well as his own ideas to create the impeccable masterpiece that became Monticello. Thus, the building represents various architectural designs that were popular around the world throughout the 18th century. It is designed based on styles that were typical of this period and therefore very historic.

The historic nature of Monticello stems from the fact that it was largely maintained by Jefferson’s slaves. The close to 200 slaves that Jefferson owned had separate dwelling places in the building. The plantation and garden outside the house were powered by slave labour. The presence of very small slave quarters could indicate the pathetic nature in which salves were treated at the time. Thus, this building represents slavery in the US, a very dark period in the history of any nation. While some people may remember the house for many positive things, people who have connections with the slaves who worked in the Monticello farm can only see it as a reminder of the hardships that their families and friends went through while working for Jefferson (Crader 690).

Monticello was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1987. Also designated heritage site at the same time is the University of Virginia, which was also designed by Jefferson. In fact, it is the only private home to be declared a world heritage site. It thus serves as a tourist destination site where people go to witness not just the design, but to also have an experience of what it felt to live in the 18th century.

There are many rooms and cellars which have a beautiful view. Visitors can tour and wonder off in these rooms as well as the outside ambience. The second and third floors are a spectacular view. It also houses the iconic dome which many tourists go to view. As a national historic landmark, Monticello serves as something that Americans identify with. It was so important that it was depicted on the reverse sides of various currencies like the 1953 $2 bill and the current nickel.

As a heritage site, Monticello holds historical, cultural, and historic significance in the US. It also represents the architectural technology used at the time. This is often used to teach students about America’s culture and history. It is also used to instruct about the architecture of the 18th century. Its importance is reflected in the manner in which it has been preserved and maintained over time. All the people who owned the property dedicated their personal finances to rebuild it to maintain its original design.

In conclusion, Monticello is a very important monumental landmark in the US. It represents the personality of one of the greatest leaders in US history. For example, it shows Jefferson’s complex and contradictory nature. It also represents his agricultural tendencies. Monticello is also a historic site. It has preserved the architectural technologies used in the 18th century. It also stands as a reminder of slavery in the US. As a heritage site, Monticello is an iconic tourist attraction centre. Many people tour the house to have a feeling of the 18th century life. It is also used for teaching and instruction. Its constant maintenance proves that the building is indeed very important to the history of the United States.

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