Saturday and Sunday I pulled the threads for my new take along project; ABS Designs’ (http://www.absdesignsonline.com/) Thomas Jefferson or TJ as I like to call him. I am a big Thomas Jefferson fan and April 13th was his birthday, so “Happy Birthday TJ.”
Thomas Jefferson (http://www.whitehouse.gov/about/presidents/thomasjefferson/ ) is my favorite president; he has my favorite monument (http://www.nps.gov/thje/ ) in Washington DC and Monticello (http://www.monticello.org/ ) is my favorite president’s home. Thomas Jefferson felt you were never too old to learn and grow. His love of country is documented in his service to our country: Governor of Virginia, Minister to France, Secretary of State, Vice-President, and 2 terms President. He was the author of the Declaration of Independence and the Statue of Virginia for Religious Freedom; gave books to start the Library of Congress; lawyer; inventor; architect; and horticulturist. He was responsible for the largest acquisition of land to the US (Louisiana Purchase) and exploration of those lands (Lewis and Clark expedition) and he founded the University of Virginia. The epitaph on his tombstone tells what he was most proud of:
HERE WAS BURIED THOMAS JEFFERSON
AUTHOR OF THE DECLARATION OF AMERICAN INDEPENDENCE
OF THE STATUTE OF VIRGINIA FOR RELIGIOUS FREEDOM
AND FATHER OF THE UNIVERSITY OF VIRGINIA
I never go back east that I don’t try to visit Monticello. One year, my husband and I did the garden tour and the sunflowers were in full bloom. We have this running joke about sunflowers; they are the state flower of Kansas and grow wild everywhere in Kansas & Missouri. So, I said to my husband, “Obnoxious weed, Jefferson must have been trying to figure out how to kill it.” Anyway the docent heard me and very indignantly informed me that these sunflowers were from the original seed brought back from the Lewis and Clark expedition and are a cash crop. She went on to say that many plants had been sent back to Jefferson during the expedition. Imagine that, the first UPS system from the middle of the Louisianan Purchase to Monticello. I am not a gardener by any stretch of the imagination, but I am told by gardeners that the diaries kept by Jefferson are wonderful. And his gardens are a picture!
Thomas Jefferson died on July 4th.. It never ceases to amaze me how far he traveled and what he accomplished; AND all without cars & planes; computers & cell phones; Facebook, twitter, etc.
Who knew you were going to get a history class and stitching all in the same post?
Back to my stitching…Thomas Jefferson’s eyes are up for discussion. Some say they were light blue, light gray, hazel or brown. I chose to think of his eyes as a blue gray and combined gray (DMC 415) with blue (DMC 926.)
The White House biography and many pictures show and describe him as, “Freckled and sandy-haired” so after basketweaving his face with flesh (DMC 948), I randomly overstitched his face with 2 ply darker flesh (DMC 758) to give him the ruddy, freckled face as described.
I didn’t get to far yesterday, but I was taking life easy after Easter. But TJ was begun on his birthday and by the 4th of July should be proudly displayed in the summer needlepoint collects. Then in December, he is going to be a birthday gift to my granddaughter who collects nutcrackers.