4 Matching Annotations
  1. Nov 2017
    1. as the legislature may from time to time think proper to enact for their government; and the said University should in all things, & at all times be subject to the controul of the legislature.

      This passage highlights the relevance the new country and government had on the formation of the school. Jefferson had spent most of his life working on creating and then perfecting (to his ideal) our current democratic system. The fact that he requires his school to answer not just to one person, but a body is reminiscent the radical new form of governing America has adopted.

      • Maddie
    2. English grammar, the higher branches of numerical Arithmetic, the geometry of straight lines and of the circle, the elements of navigation and Geography to a sufficient degree, and thus afford to greater numbers the means of being qualified for the Various Vocations of life, needing more instruction than merely menial or praedial1 labor;

      Here we see that Jefferson preferred education to expand not only towards the higher education of university, but also towards primary education. The subjects he wishes to be taught at these primary schools are very similar to the liberal arts education he favored at the university level, in which he sought to create a well-rounded citizen who is knowledgeable in most disciplines. To educate a young man then, past the subjects his preferred vocation requires, was likely a foreign concept, but Jefferson sought to not only do this, but to begin the process young. On my part, I agree with him in this belief. People, especially when young, as they are still developing set beliefs and thoughts, should be exposed to a broad range of topics. I believe what is learned in ones youth is critical in forming the person that comes later.

      • Maddie S.
  2. Oct 2017
    1. of which the legislature require the development: those for example which are to form the statesmen, legislators & judges, on whom public prosperity, & individual happiness are so much to depend.

      This is an interesting statement and demonstrates who exactly the university hoped to educate back then. The students who it educated would go on to very high standing roles in society. While we certainly have students now who hope and will go on to assume similar roles, I believe the university seeks not just to educate those who will lead, but also prepare normal citizens who will go on to fulfill jobs, which still important, won't be as directly powerful. In my opinion this is an important change, as every citizen, wherever they may be from socially and financially, and in whatever role they go on to fill in society, should be educated to the fullest extent in order to be an active member of our nation.

      • Maddie S.
    2. Also the whole of his Slaves amounting to 57 in number.

      This is the only time slaves are mentioned outright in this document. Jefferson and the other founders obviously view them as property, listing them between acres of land and placing them low on the list. This is interesting to me as without slaves the university likely never would have been founded, built, or maintained. It's disheartening that they provided so much to this university, unwilling as well, and yet seem to be almost an afterthought in this document. According to Encyclopedia Virginia, these slaves cleared land, cut and hauled lumber, made bricks, and transported stone in the beginning. Most were rented from their owners, likely causing them to be separated from their homes and loved ones. It also gives the name of a few slaves such as Carpenter Sam, who helped to build pavilions, Elijah who hauled stone, and William Green working as a blacksmith. It's important we recognize not just the labor they provided to the University, but also them as people and human beings who are apart of the University's complex history.

      • Maddie S.