Poplar Forest–Thomas Jefferson’s Hideaway

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Poplar Forest. Tom WilmerMost everyone is familiar with Thomas Jefferson’s neoclassical plantation estate, Monticello, located in the Charlottesville, Virginia countryside. Incredibly, Jefferson commenced drafting plans for his iconic abode when he was only 26 years old. Today, Monticello remains as an iconic symbol not only of Thomas Jefferson and his brilliance, but a beacon of America’s past. But, there’s another architectural masterpiece designed by Thomas Jefferson, crafted to serve as his retreat where he could relax and unwind out of the limelight. Jefferson’s hidden villa, Poplar Forest, built in 1806, incorporated cutting-edge Palladian motifs such as floor to ceiling windows, alcove beds, and skylights. It was also the first octagonal residence in America. Poplar Forest was so remote that Jefferson got lost more than once while en route to his retreat in the countryside, 45 miles east of Roanoke Virginia and 190 miles south of Washington D.C. Come along and join Wayne Gannaway, Director of Programs, Marketing and Grants with the Corporation for Jefferson’s off-the-beaten path, Poplar Forest, a National Historic landmark—situated, fittingly, on the outskirts of Forest, Virginia.


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Wayne Gannaway (L) at Poplar Forest
Wayne Gannaway (L) talks with Tom Wilmer at Poplar Forest–Thomas Jefferson’s retreat in the Virginia countryside.


Poplar Forest
Thomas Jefferson’s Virginia Retreat–Poplar Forest. Photo Credit Tom Wilmer
Poplar Forest Virginia
Thomas Jefferson’s Poplar Forest in Virginia countryside. Photo Credit: Tom Wilmer