Thomas Jefferson by R.B. Bernstein
President number three! 3.5 stars
What I learned about Thomas Jefferson:
- He had red hair.
- He was involved with the Louisiana Purchase and Louis and Clark’s expedition
- He had very conflicting ideas on many things – religion, slavery, etc.
- He was the founder of the University of Virginia (and has students as rebellious as some today!!!)
- Monticello was mostly a disaster for Jefferson’s entire life because he kept reconstructing it.
What I wish I learned:
- More about the conflict between him and Adams. I feel like it was glossed over. It DID explain a lot about the conflict between the Federalists and Republicans but I would have liked more on their friendship, personally.
- More about Jefferson’s time overseas. I felt like I learned a lot more from the Adams biography. I also know from Adams’ biography that Jefferson has a friendship with Abigail Adams which this book barely touched on.
I feel like is Jefferson is glamorized in history books/society. This book showed a lot of his faults. I went back and forth between thinking, “This guy isn’t so nice” and “This guy is human, just like the rest of us.” He also was a very forward thinker which often got him in “trouble” because it didn’t agree with the opinions of his time.
Perhaps one day I will pick up another book on Jefferson because I feel like there was a lot more to learn. Overall, this book was a good start and relatively easy to read.