Is your surname Jefferson?

Research the Jefferson family

Peter Jefferson's Geni Profile

Share your family tree and photos with the people you know and love

  • Build your family tree online
  • Share photos and videos
  • Smart Matching™ technology
  • Free!

Share

Peter Jefferson

Birthdate: (50)
Birthplace: Osbornes, Chesterfield, Virginia
Death: Died in Shadwell, Albemarle, Virginia
Place of Burial: Albemarle, Virginia, United States
Immediate Family:

Son of Capt. Thomas Jefferson and Virginia Mary Jefferson
Husband of Jane Jefferson
Father of Jemima Davis; Jane Randolph Bolling; Mary Bolling; Maria Jefferson; Thomas Jefferson, 3rd President of the United States of America and 9 others
Brother of Judith Farrar; Thomas Jefferson, III; Field Jefferson; Mary Field Turpin; Martha Field Goode and 1 other

Occupation: Surveyor, cartographer, Colonel, Surveyor/Cartographer, Soldier/Colonel
Managed by: Private User
Last Updated:

About Peter Jefferson

Peter Jefferson (February 29, 1708, - August 17, 1757) was the father of American President Thomas Jefferson (1743–1826)[1]. A surveyor and cartographer, his Fry-Jefferson Map of 1751 accurately depicted the Allegheny Mountains for the first time and showed the route of "The Great Road from the Yadkin River thro Virginia to Philadelphia distant 455 Miles" — what would later come to be known as the Great Wagon Road.

Jefferson was born in Chesterfield County, Virginia, one of six children. He did not receive any formal education while young, but according to his famous son, he nevertheless "read much and improved himself."

In 1734, Jefferson claimed the land in present-day Albemarle County which he eventually named Shadwell. He married Jane Randolph in 1739 (daughter of Isham Randolph and granddaughter of William Randolph). For a year or two following his marriage, his residence was in present-day Powhatan County Virginia near Fine Creek. Jefferson built a house on the Shadwell tract in 1741 or 1742, and moved there sometime before Thomas Jefferson was born.

He was made one of the first officers of Albemarle County in 1745. Later in that same year, he was made guardian over the children of William Randolph, his wife's cousin who had recently died. He and his family moved to Tuckahoe in Goochland County, where Thomas Jefferson first attended school. In 1749, Peter Jefferson, along with Joshua Fry, Thomas Walker, Edmund Pendleton, and others, established the Loyal Land Company, and were granted 800,000 acres (3,200 km²) in present-day Virginia, West Virginia and Kentucky.


1751 Fry-Jefferson map depicting 'The Great Waggon Road to Philadelphia'Peter Jefferson was a cartographer and surveyor who, along with Fry, completed the survey of the Virginia-North Carolina border, begun by William Byrd II some time earlier. The detailed Fry-Jefferson Map, cited by his son Thomas in Notes on the State of Virginia, was produced by him and Fry.

The Jefferson family moved back to Shadwell in 1752.

Peter Jefferson died at his house on the Shadwell tract in Albemarle County when his son Thomas was 14 years old and Thomas Walker was appointed his guardian. The house burned down in 1770. The area around his house is being studied, but his burial location is unknown.


Peter Jefferson (February 29, 1708, - August 17, 1757) was the father of American President Thomas Jefferson (1743–1826)[1]. A surveyor and cartographer, his Fry-Jefferson Map of 1751 accurately depicted the Allegheny Mountains for the first time and showed the route of "The Great Road from the Yadkin River thro Virginia to Philadelphia distant 455 Miles" — what would later come to be known as the Great Wagon Road.

Jefferson was born in Chesterfield County, Virginia, one of six children. He did not receive any formal education while young, but according to his famous son, he nevertheless "read much and improved himself."

In 1734, Jefferson claimed the land in present-day Albemarle County which he eventually named Shadwell. He married Jane Randolph in 1739 (daughter of Isham Randolph and granddaughter of William Randolph). For a year or two following his marriage, his residence was in present-day Powhatan County Virginia near Fine Creek. Jefferson built a house on the Shadwell tract in 1741 or 1742, and moved there sometime before Thomas Jefferson was born.

Peter Jefferson's children were:

Jane Jefferson (1740–1765) - died unmarried at age 25

Mary Jefferson Bolling (1741–1811) - married John Bolling, who served in the Virginia House of Burgesses

Thomas Jefferson (1743–1826)

Elizabeth Jefferson (1744–1774) - mentally handicapped

Martha Jefferson Carr (1746–1811) - married Dabney Carr, founder of the underground Committee of Correspondence in Virginia on the eve of the American Revolution

Peter Field Jefferson (1748-1748) - died as an infant child

Peter Thomas Jefferson (1750-1750) - died as an infant child

Lucy Jefferson Lewis (1752–1811) - married Charles Lilburn Lewis

Anna Scott Jefferson Marks (1755–1828) - twin of Randolph

Randolph Jefferson (1755–1815) - twin of Anna Scott Thomas Jefferson,

Lucy Jefferson, and Randolph Jefferson were notable for having a number of descendants in common with the Lewis family of Virginia.

He was made one of the first officers of Albemarle County in 1745. Later in that same year, he was made guardian over the children of William Randolph, his wife's cousin who had recently died. He and his family moved to Tuckahoe in Goochland County, where Thomas Jefferson first attended school. In 1749, Peter Jefferson, along with Joshua Fry, Thomas Walker, Edmund Pendleton and others, established the Loyal Land Company, and were granted 800,000 acres (3,200 km²) in present-day Virginia, West Virginia and Kentucky.

1751 Fry-Jefferson map depicting 'The Great Waggon Road to Philadelphia' Peter Jefferson was a cartographer and surveyor who, along with Fry, completed the survey of the Virginia-North Carolina border, begun by William Byrd II some time earlier. The detailed Fry-Jefferson Map, cited by his son Thomas in Notes on the State of Virginia, was produced by him and Fry.

The Jefferson family moved back to Shadwell in 1752.

Peter Jefferson died at his house on the Shadwell tract in Albemarle County when his son Thomas was 14 years old and Thomas Walker was appointed his guardian. The house burned down in 1770. The area around his house is being studied, but his burial location is unknown.



Thomas Jefferson, third president of the United States, was of English descent, but with deep and wide Virginia roots. His father and paternal grandparents were Virginians; his mother was born in London to English parents.

Jefferson's father, Peter Jefferson, was a surveyor and cartographer, as well as a Virginia land-owner and planter. He and Joshua Fry, another surveyor, created the Fry-Jefferson Map of 1751, which for the first time accurately showed the Allegheny Mountains, and noted the route of what was later called The Great Wagon Road from Virginia to Philadelphia. Jefferson's mother, Jane Randolph, is seldom mentioned in his writings, but she played a critical role in managing the household of this prominent family. When her husband died in 1757, she had eight children living, the oldest 17, the youngest only two years old.

Long before he became president, Thomas Jefferson played an influential part in Virginia colonial and revolutionary life - he was a lawyer, scholar, and statesman. He served in the Second Continental Congress and wrote the text of the Declaration of Independence. He also served as Governor of Virginia, American Minister to France, Secretary of State under Washington and Vice President under Adams. As President, he was responsible for the Louisiana Purchase, aided the Lewis and Clark expedition, and established West Point.


Thomas Jefferson, third president of the United States, was of English descent, but with deep and wide Virginia roots. His father and paternal grandparents were Virginians; his mother was born in London to English parents.

Jefferson's father, Peter Jefferson, was a surveyor and cartographer, as well as a Virginia land-owner and planter. He and Joshua Fry, another surveyor, created the Fry-Jefferson Map of 1751, which for the first time accurately showed the Allegheny Mountains, and noted the route of what was later called The Great Wagon Road from Virginia to Philadelphia. Jefferson's mother, Jane Randolph, is seldom mentioned in his writings, but she played a critical role in managing the household of this prominent family. When her husband died in 1757, she had eight children living, the oldest 17, the youngest only two years old.

Long before he became president, Thomas Jefferson played an influential part in Virginia colonial and revolutionary life - he was a lawyer, scholar, and statesman. He served in the Second Continental Congress and wrote the text of the Declaration of Independence. He also served as Governor of Virginia, American Minister to France, Secretary of State under Washington and Vice President under Adams. As President, he was responsible for the Louisiana Purchase, aided the Lewis and Clark expedition, and established West Point.


Early Days

Peter Jefferson was born on February 8, 1708 near present day Richmond, Virginia in a family of the colonial gentry. His grandfather, Thomas Jefferson, held the title of office surveyor of roads from 1687 until his death in 1697. The elder Thomas Jefferson’s duties as surveyor included laying the best routes to churches and county courthouses as well as built and maintained bridgesThe skills of his grandfather without a doubt would have an impact on Peter Jefferson’s future profession. Peter Jefferson’s education as a young child consisted of his servant nursemaids, but he gained most of his knowledge from practical applications. For example, he would often accompany his father on numerous business transactions and he took over the management of his father’s plantation when he was eighteen. Through the social prominence of his parents Jefferson became acquainted with men such as William Mayo, the county surveyor, and Thomas Randolph who’s son William would be a life long friend of Peter.

As Peter Jefferson grew older he believed it to be politically and socially desirable to become associated with the gentry on the north side of the James River. His good friend William Randolph suggested that he might pursue an area along the Rivanna River. While serving as justice of Goochland County Jefferson traveled in a northwest direction from Goochland. Jefferson encountered beautiful landscape as Edgar Hickish states, “The bottom lands were covered with a tall grass, which, when rippled by the stiff south wind, resembled a lake of green; and in the distance could be seen the smoke azure of the great Blue Ridge. Due to his position as justice Jefferson easily obtained a 2,000 acre tract of land on the north side of the James River. Jefferson scored an additional 200 acres from his good friend William Randolph for Henry Witherburne’s “biggest bowl of arrack punch. William Mayo, a Jefferson family acquaintance, was the Goochland County surveyor and a map-maker both profitable businesses. Jefferson was interested in Mayo’s skills and developed great respect for him when he visited his father after running the dividing line between Virginia and North Carolina. Peter Jefferson biographer Edgar Hickish addresses the possibility that Jefferson may have accompanied Mayo on surveying trips and he may have received mathematics instruction from Joshua Fry at the College of William and Mary.

Early Albemarle

In 1737 Peter Jefferson joined his close friend William Randolph in a 50,000 land venture, which would be the first of many to follow. Around the same year Jefferson began to settle in Albemarle County. According to his son Thomas’ autobiography he was the third or fourth settler in the region (Randolph). Peter Jefferson, who already achieved social status, became even more prominent upon marrying Jane Randolph in 1739. Jefferson’s family moved from Goochland County to Shadwell in Albemarle County in 1742. Upon the death of William Mayo, Jefferson became the Goochland County surveyor and soon after the county divided one September 18, 1744 with half becoming Albemarle.

Loyal Land Company

Jefferson along with other land speculators including Dr. Thomas Walker, John Meriwether, and Joshua Fry formed the Loyal Land Company. The group petitioned for an area of land consisting of 800,000 (1,250 sq. mi.), which began at the North Carolina and Virginia line and ran north and west until the quantity of the grant had been reached. The group had four years to complete the surveys for the land. Jefferson and Fry went to the eastern coast to a monument left my William Mayo in 1728 to begin the survey of the border. In this aspect Jefferson’s family connection with Mayo proved invaluable, as he was familiar with the details of Mayo’s expedition and carried his map with him. The typical surveying duties included drawing up notes, making “reconnaissance” sketches, as well as naming streams and rivers. The two men also had time to explore the countryside because much of it was part of their tract through the Loyal Land Company. The survey culminated in a map of the border by both Jefferson and Fry, which appeared in Williamsburg on November 6, 1749.

Legacy to Western Exploration

Peter Jefferson and his good friend and neighbor Joshua Fry began a partnership and were commissioned to create the newly established county lines between March 4th and the 16th in . In early September 1746 Joshua Fry and Jefferson teamed up again to survey the Fairfax line of the Northern Neck. Once the data was collected from the expedition Jefferson and colleague Robert Brooke drew the plat based on William Mayo’s earlier map and Jefferson added topographic features such as the Shenandoah Valley and the Blue Ridge and Allegheny Mountains. While in Williamsburg Jefferson and Fry became aware of a request from the British Lords of Trade and Plantations to the Governor of Virginia for the creation of a comprehensive map of the Virginia Colony. The two men were approved to complete the map on July 19, 1750. According to Hickish, Fry had long dreamed of mapping Virginia showing the “bays, navigable rivers, counties, parishes, and principle estates,” which he had proposed on December 15, 1738 to the House of Burgesses. The preliminary drawings were made at the Albemarle County’s surveyor’s office and the final draft was produced at Jefferson’s home Shadwell taking one year to complete and would be known as the “Fry-Jefferson Map”. The Council examined the map and could not determine “where the hand of Jefferson ceased and that of Fry commenced.”

Final Days

Peter Jefferson began to fall ill on June 25, 1757 and a slave was sent to Castle Hill to request the services of Dr. Thomas Walker. Walker made eleven visits to Shadwell before Jefferson passed away on August 17, 1757. Through family connections and self-advancement Peter Jefferson was considered an accomplished man of his day. He acquired large tracts of land, led numerous surveying expeditions and created some of the most detailed and accurate maps of his day. Jefferson’s talents and skills would greatly influence his son Thomas Jefferson who would follow in the footsteps of his father.

http://www2.vcdh.virginia.edu/lewisandclark/students/projects/adventurers/jeffersonbio.html

view all 18

Peter Jefferson's Timeline

1707
February 28, 1707
Chesterfield, Virginia
1740
June 27, 1740
Age 33
Shadwell, Albemarle County, Province of Virginia
1740
Age 32
Shadwell, Albemarle County, Virginia, United States
1741
October 1, 1741
Age 34
Goochland, Virginia
1743
April 13, 1743
Age 36
Goochland, now Ablemarle, County, Virginia
1743
Age 35
Shadwell, Albemarle, Virginia
1744
November 4, 1744
Age 37
Shadwell, Albemarle, Virginia, USA
1744
Age 36
Virginia, USA
1746
May 29, 1746
Age 39
Shadwell, Albemarle, Virginia, USA