The Peabody Award‑winning series profiling the men who have served as chief executive of the United States.

3rd President - Thomas Jefferson
Born: April 13, 1743
Died: July 4, 1826

  • Personal
  • First Lady: Martha "Patsy" Randolph, Daughter
  • Children: 5
  • Education Level: College
  • School Attended: College of William and Mary
  • Profession: Lawyer
  • Public Service
  • Dates of Presidency: March 4, 1801 - March 3, 1809
  • # of Terms: 2
  • Vice President: Aaron Burr, George Clinton
  • Party: Democratic-Republican
  • Vice President For: John Adams (1979-1801)
  • Cabinet Service: Secretary of State (George Washington, 1790-1793)
  • Governor: Virginia (1779-1781)
  • Colonial Government: House of Burgesses (1769-1774), Continental Congress (1783-1784)
  • Other Offices: Minister to France; Virginia Continental Congress; Virginia House of Delegates
  • Did You Know?
  • He authorized the Lewis and Clark expedition--an expedition which explored the land the U.S. obtained through the Louisiana Purchase.
  • He was the first president elected by the House of Representatives.
  • He wanted to be remembered not for his presidency, but for the roles he played in the creation of the Declaration of Independence, the Virginia Statute of Religious Freedom and the University of Virginia.
  • When he became president, he had been a widower for 19 years. His daughter Martha or "Patsy" assumed the role of First Lady.
  • Did You Know?
  • He authorized the Lewis and Clark expedition--an expedition which explored the land the U.S. obtained through the Louisiana Purchase.
  • He was the first president elected by the House of Representatives.
  • He wanted to be remembered not for his presidency, but for the roles he played in the creation of the Declaration of Independence, the Virginia Statute of Religious Freedom and the University of Virginia.
  • When he became president, he had been a widower for 19 years. His daughter Martha or "Patsy" assumed the role of First Lady.
  • Jefferson’s wife, Martha Wayles Skelton Jefferson, died 19 years before Jefferson became president, making him the first widower in the White House.
  • During his administration, the U.S. population was five and a half million.
  • "Of all the cankers of human happiness, none corrodes it with so silent, yet so baneful a tooth, as indolence. . .Idleness begets ennui, ennui the hypochondria, and that a diseased body."
More Less

About This Series

The Peabody Award-winning series profiles the men who have served as chief executive of the United States. This website, created as a companion to C-SPAN's 20th anniversary television series, provides an in-depth look at each of the presidents, their lives, families and administrations.