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Thomas Jefferson's Granddaughter in Queen Victoria's England: The Travel Diary of Ellen Wayles Coolidge, 1838-1839 (Paperback)

Ellen Wayles Coolidge

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ISBN 10: 1936520044 / ISBN 13: 9781936520046
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Paperback. Shipping may be from multiple locations in the US or from the UK, depending on stock availability. 432 pages. 0.771. Bookseller Inventory # 9781936520046

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Bibliographic Details

Title: Thomas Jefferson's Granddaughter in Queen ...

Binding: Paperback

Book Condition:New

About this title


Ellen Wayles Coolidge arrived in London in June 1838 at the advent of Queen Victoria’s reign―the citizens were still celebrating the coronation. During her nine-month stay, Coolidge kept a diary that reveals the uncommon education of her youth, when she lived and studied at Monticello with her grandfather, Thomas Jefferson. London’s docks, theaters, parks, public buildings, and museums all come under Coolidge’s astute gaze as she and her husband, Joseph Coolidge Jr., travel the city and gradually gain entry into some of the most coveted drawing rooms of the time.

Coolidge records the details of her conversations with writers such as Samuel Rogers, Thomas Carlyle, and Anna Jameson and activists including Charles Sumner and Harriet Martineau. She gives firsthand accounts of the fashioning of the young queen’s image by the artists Charles Robert Leslie and Sir Francis Chantrey and takes notes as she watches the queen open Parliament and battle the first scandal of her reign. Her love of painting reawakened, Coolidge chronicles her opportunities to view more than four hundred works of art held in both public and private collections, acknowledging a new appreciation for the modern art of J. M. W. Turner and a fondness for the Dutch masters.

As rich as her experience in England proves to be, Coolidge often reflects on her family in Boston and Virginia and her youth at Monticello. As she encounters her mother’s schoolgirl friends and recalls the songs her grandfather sang while working in his study, Coolidge’s thoughts return to Monticello and the lessons she learned there.

Distributed for the Massachusetts Historical Society and the Thomas Jefferson Foundation

About the Author:

Ann Lucas Birle is a scholar at the International Center for Jefferson Studies. Lisa A. Francavilla is Managing Editor of The Papers of Thomas Jefferson: Retirement Series.

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