Washington, D.C.

From Thomas Jefferson Encyclopedia

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Sites Associated with Thomas Jefferson[1]

  • Gadsby's Tavern, 134 North Royal Street, Alexandria. Jefferson stayed here on the occasion of a celebration in his honor in March 1801.[2] This site is now a museum.[3]
  • The Octagon, residence of John Tayloe, 1741 New York Avenue NW. Tayloe was not a particular friend of Jefferson's, but they did know each other.[4] The Octagon is now the headquarters of the American Architectural Foundation.[5]
  • Christ Episcopal Church, 620 G Street, SE. In 1807, the vestry reserved Pew No. 42 for President Jefferson, who responded with thanks, but noted that it would have been "extremely pleasing to have continued a member of their congregation and to have availed myself of their kind offer, had the distance of the new building permitted it." "This single circumstance obliging me to decline it,I1 he added, "I take the liberty of mentioning it to you, that the pew may not remain unoccupied."[6] The church still stands today and has an active congregation.[7]
  • Main (Latrobe) Gate, Navy Yard, 8th and M Streets, SE. Jefferson certainly had frequent business with the Navy Yard as President, and it seems probable he would have been in this building at some time. Designed by Benjamin Latrobe and erected in 1806, this site was placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1973.[8]
  • Kalorama, residence of Joel Barlow, once near the intersection of Massachusetts and Florida Avenues. Jefferson urged Barlow to buy this property in 1802, although Barlow did not do so until 1807. Jefferson is said to have visited Barlow to advise on his landscaping and orchards.[9] Kalorama was leveled by the city to extend S Street NW in 1889.[10]
  • Sydney, residence of Samuel Harrison and Margaret Bayard Smith, good friends and colleagues of Jefferson. This was their country residence. It is now subsumed in St. Thomas' Hall at Catholic University. It is very probable that Jefferson was there at some point.[11]
  • Theodore Roosevelt (Analostan) Island. Jefferson visited Analostan Island several times,[12] both to visit its owner, John Mason, and to enjoy the farm and gardens.[13] The site is now administered by the National Park Service as part of the George Washington Parkway.[14]
  • Uriah Forrest House, 3350 M Street, NW. Jefferson had dinner at this house in 1790, on his way to see the Little Falls of the Potomac River.[15] This house now serves as the Ukrainian Embassy.[16]
  • Notley Young House, on G Street between 9th and 10th, SW. Jefferson was here in 1790;[17] the house was demolished in 1856.
  • Quality Hill (Worthington House), 3425 Prospect Street, NW. We do not know whether Jefferson ever visited this house, but he did know John Thomson Mason, its owner until 1807.[18] The house still stands, but is privately owned.
  • First Baptist Church, 19th and I Streets, NW, Alexandria. Jefferson probably never visited this church, but he did contribute $50 toward it.[19] The congregation has moved several times since Jefferson's time, and is now located on King Street.[20]
  • Washington Theater, 11th and C Streets, NW. Jefferson attended plays here.[21] Burned in 1821.
  • Suter's Tavern, Wisconsin Street between M and Water Street. Jefferson often stayed here on his way to and from Philadelphia.[22] The proprietor moved to the Union Tavern in 1799. The original building housing Suter's Tavern no longer stands.
  • Fountain Tavern, Royal Street, Alexandria. Jefferson often stayed here: the tavern hosted a public dinner in Jefferson's honor on March 11, 1790.[23] The building no longer exists.
  • David Shoemaker's house on F Street. Site of Jefferson's sitting for his portrait by Saint-Mémin.[24]
  • Long's Hotel, site of the inaugural ball given for James Madison, which Jefferson attended.[25] The building no longer exists.
  • Pontius Stelle's hotels at various Washington locations. Jefferson was probably in most of them at one time or another, although no specific references have been found. Stelle's hotels during Jefferson's presidency were on A Street, then Carroll Row on 1st Street.


  1. This section is based on Lucia Stanton, Monticello Research Report, March 1994.
  2. MB, 1032.
  3. Office of Historic Alexandria. "Gadsby's Tavern Museum Homepage."
  4. MB, 1235.
  5. American Architectural Foundation. "The Octagon Museum."
  6. Jefferson to Henry Ingle, November 6, 1807, Thomas Jefferson Papers, Huntington Library.
  7. Washington Parish. "Christ Church on Capitol Hill."
  8. Department of the Navy, Naval Historical Center. "Latrobe Gate."
  9. Harold D. Eberlein and Cortlandt V. D. Hubbard, Historic Houses of George-town and Washington City (Richmond: Dietz Press, 1958), 441.
  10. Ibid., 445.
  11. Historic Images of the Catholic University of America: Vanished Buildings. "St. Thomas Hall."
  12. MB, 1048, 1085, 1165.
  13. Gunston Hall, Home of George Mason. "Analostan Island."
  14. National Park Service. "Theodore Roosevelt Island National Memorial."
  15. Thomas Lee Shippen to William Shippen, Alexandria, September 15, 1790, in PTJ, 17:465.
  16. Embassy of Ukraine to the United States of America. "History of the Forrest-Marbury House."
  17. Ibid.
  18. See Mason to Jefferson, Georgetown, March 20, 1801, in PTJ, 33:380.
  19. MB, 2:1146.
  20. First Baptist Church of Alexandria. "History."
  21. MB, 2:1170.
  22. MB, 2:877, 902, 911, 975.
  23. Address of Welcome from the Mayor of Alexandria, March 1790, and Response to the Address of Welcome, March 11, 1790, in PTJ, 16:224-5.
  24. MB, 2:1140. Bush, Life Portraits, 67-70.
  25. Margaret Bayard Smith's Account of Madison's Inauguration and Ball, in PTJ:RS, 1:10. See also Smith, First Forty Years, 410-12.

Further Sources