Monticello recently sponsored an evening discussion by Michael Kranish of his new book “Flight from Monticello,” an account of Thomas Jefferson’s actions as Virginia’s governor during the American Revolution, and his near capture by British troops at Monticello in June, 1781. At the time, Jefferson was 38 years old. When the British invaded the Tidewater area, Jefferson and the Virginia legislature moved first from Williamsburg to Richmond, and then from Richmond to Charlottesville, to escape the threat of capture. However, the British sent a squadron of dragoons, commanded by legendary redcoat Bonastre Tarleton, to Charlottesville to surprise Jefferson and his colleagues. Jefferson fled Monticello just moments before the British troops arrived, having been warned of their approach by local residents, including Jack Jouett, Charlottesville’s version of Paul Revere. The book is a fascinating account of late 18th century Virginia and American politics, society, military strategy, and personalities, including Jefferson, Benedict Arnold, Patrick Henry and the Marquis de Lafayette.
Monticello sponsors many lectures and discussions about Thomas Jefferson and the founding of our country, and carries books such as “Flight from Monticello” at its spectacular gift shop. Next time you visit Monticello, check out their special programs, books and gifts, and oh, by the way, if you need a place to stay, call us!