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Revolutionary figure Essays

Introduction
Thomas Jefferson, the third President of the United States was born in 1743 at Shadwell in what is presently known as Albemarle County. His radical career began in 1769, working as a representative in the Virginia House. Jefferson’s reputation started to reach beyond Virginia in the year 1774, when he published a political pamphlet championing the rights of Americans[1]. As a publisher of the Declaration of Independence as well as the Virginia decree for religious autonomy, he is perhaps the most noticeable revolutionary and champion of spiritual and political freedom in the history of United States. He championed the aspirations of a novel nation in unparallel phrase. As a public official, legislator, executive and diplomat, he served the commonwealth of Virginia and the juvenile American country for nearly forty years. Jefferson, who was the leader from 1801 to 1809, was the recognized head of his party, and his election to the presidency has often been interpreted as a justification of the entitlement of political opposition.
Opinions vary about his conduct of foreign matters as president. He maintained impartiality in a world of war and his policies did not protect neutral rights at sea and inflicted hardships at home. He was precisely hailed as the man of the people because he conducted the government in the fashionable interest, rather than the concern of any privileged individuals and in accordance with the will of the people.  A dedicated family man who situated great store by confidentiality; he constructed his house on a mountain, but didn’t look down on people. A distinguished naturalist and architect in his own right, a striking linguist, a noticeable bibliophile and the founder of the University of Virginia; he was the principal benefactor of learning and the fine arts in his nation. And, with the probable exemption of Benjamin Franklin, he was the close American estimate of the universal man.
Declaration of Independence
From the commencement of the struggle with the mother nation, Jefferson joined hands with the advance patriots, basing his position on a broad knowledge of political philosophy and English history. His most significant early contribution to the patriot’s cause was his strong pamphlet ‘A summary view of the rights of British America’, initially written for staging to the Virginia conference of that year. In this pamphlet, he stressed natural rights such as that of immigration, denied parliamentary power over the colonies. As an affiliate of the Continental Congress, Jefferson was selected in the year 1776 to write the declaration of independence[2]. He abridged revolutionary philosophy in a short paragraph that has been widely viewed ever since as a charter of universal liberties. He displayed to the world the instance of the patriots in a pattern of burning accusations against the monarchy.
In the view of the contemporary erudition some of the accusations need modification. But there exists an everlasting eminence in the philosophical part of the declaration, which asserts that all human beings are equal in terms of rights, irrespective of wealth, birth, status and that the administration is not the master but the servant of humans.  The declaration alone gave accorded Jefferson a stable fame. Wishing to be close to his relatives and also desiring to decipher his human rights philosophy into legitimate institutions, He left Congress in 1776 and worked in the Virginia governing body until his nomination as governor in the year 1779.

Advocate of Religious Freedom
While revolution in America continued, Jefferson sought to open up Virginia’s laws.   This is widely seen as the most ingenious time of his innovatory statesmanship. His prior proposals for widening the people entitled to vote and making the structure of representation more evenhanded had not succeeded, and the periods allowed no feat against slavery with exception of closing off the slave trade. Jefferson introduced several bills that were rejected ferociously by those acting in lieu of the conservative planter group. In 1776 he was successful in eliminating feudal vestiges in the land system, such as primogeniture and entail; his suggestion to eliminate primogeniture became legal in 1785. According to Malone[3] Jefferson conceitedly noted that “these laws, drawn by myself, laid the ax to the foot of pseudo aristocracy”. And he was at the forefront in the eradication of the church. In the year 1779, with Edmund Pendleton and George Wythe, he drafted a significant statement on the modification of the laws. In the same year the creation of his bill of religious freedom stimulated a debate that caused uproar in Virginia for close to eight years.
Significance of the Legislation
The legislation was very significant as no other region; indeed, there was no other country that offered complete religious freedom at that period. Jefferson legislation required all men to be autonomous to profess and by suggestion to sustain their views on issues of religion and no other law would enlarge, affect or diminish their civil rights. Most Virginians viewed the legislation as an assault on Christianity. This was the most renowned single bills that sought to create religious freedom which was adopted in 1786 and the legislation for the general dissemination of knowledge, which was rejected as he drafted it. His fundamental rationales were to destruct artificial prestige of all sorts, to enhance social mobility, and to create pathway for the ordinary aristocracy of virtue and talent, which should offer leadership for a gratis society.  Jefferson was also largely instrumental in developing a major modification of the criminal law, although it wasn’t enacted until 1796[4]. His bill to establish a free structure of tax-supported basic education for everyone except slave was rejected as were his suggestions to establish a public collection and to modify the core curriculum of the College of Mary and William.
As governor from 1779 to 1781, Thomas had little authority and he endured discredit when the invaders from Britain overran Virginia. An inquest into his behavior during his final year in office was elected by the government soon after his retirement. He was totally justified by the subsequent legislature, but these accusations were later blown out of proportion by political enemies and were pursued by them to some degree throughout his career.  During his short private period from public office, he compiled his writings on the region of Virginia, which was published in 1785 while he was in France. This work was illustrated by experienced authority at the time as the most exceptional natural history of not only Virginia but the whole of North America. Accomplished in rejoinder to a sequence of questions by the leader of French delegation, it was seemingly an account of productions, government, society and resources of a sole state. But it extended to continent and comprised reflections on slavery and religion. It later appeared in numerous editions and was the foundation of his reputation as a scientist.
Ordinance of 1784
 In 1782, after the death of his wife, Jefferson made two major contributions of enduring significance to the country. Between 1783 and 1784, Jefferson’s most noticeable services were linked with the espousal of the coinage decimal system which he attempted to expand to measures and weights and with the 1984’s ordinance. Though not accepted, the latter prefigured numerous aspects of the popular ordinance of 1787, which created the Northwest Territory. This led to the espousal of the dollar instead of the pound as the fundamental economic unit in America. As a head of the team dealing with the administration of western tracts, Jefferson presented proposal as farsighted and liberal as to comprise when adopted, the most developmental colonial strategy of any country in contemporary history. The suggested regulation of 1784 mirrored Jefferson notion that the Western regions should be independent and upon reaching a specific level of growth, should be acknowledged to the Union as complete associates with the initial thirteen states.
Abolition of Slavery
Jefferson proceeded as far as advocating the banning of slavery an every territory in Western America after 1800. Although Jefferson himself was an owner of slaves, he argued that slavery was nothing but an evil that shouldn’t be allowed to spread. Meltz take at Jefferson opinion on slavery is very strong. Like numerous Americans, he was disturbed by the establishment yet proceeded to trade, own and utilize the slave’s services in his entire life[5]. The contrast demonstrates how complicated the matter was and how profoundly it divided the nation. Meltzer on the other hand presents Jefferson as the beneficiary and product of the slave dependant from his original reminiscences to the slave-constructed casket in which he was masked in[6]. The theme is not a mere condemnation, but demonstrates the contrast between the philosopher, the persistent political realist who achieved support by pushing his ideas neither too far nor too fast.    In the year 1784, the terms prohibiting slavery was defeated by a whisker. Had one delegate John Beatty of New Jersey been present, the legislation would have been passed.  Jefferson later lamented “We see the fate of millions unborn hanging on the tongue of one man, and heaven was silent in that awful moment”[7]. Although proposed ordinance was later approved by the congress, it was seldom implemented; its major aspects were integrated, nonetheless, in the 1787 ordinance which created the Northwest region. In addition, slavery was banned in the northwest region.
Jefferson’s Era
During Jefferson’s era as the president of America, internal duties were decreased, the military spending was reduced; the Sedition and Alien acts were allowed to lapse; and strategies were made to snuff out the public credit. Frugality and simplicity became the trademarks of Jefferson’s government. The purchase of Louisiana in 1803 capped his accomplishments. Paradoxically, he had to overrun constitutional barriers in an attempt to assume control of the novel vast region without permission by constitutional adjustment. Nevertheless, the purchase of Louisiana was received with passion.
Conclusion
Jefferson is widely considered the closest approximate of universal man in the history of United States history. His contributions in the promotion of natural rights, emigration, and freedom of religion and abolition of slavery forms one of the most significant hallmarks of his political career and his contribution to democracy remains unparalleled in the world history.  The founding of the University of Virginia in 1819 is considered Jefferson’s major accomplishment. The institution was the ultimate of three revolutionary contributions; they comprised a trilogy of interconnected causes: autonomy of conscience, freedom from Britain, and self-determination sustained via education.

Bibliography
Hendrickson, David C., and Robert W. Tucker. Empire of Liberty: The Statecraft of
Thomas Jefferson. New York: Oxford University Press, USA, 1992, p.34
Meltz, Milton. Thomas Jefferson: The Revolutionary Aristocrat, Retrieved June 10, 2009
from http://www.amazon.com/Thomas-Jefferson-Revolutionary-Aristocrat-
Biographies/dp/0531110699.
Malone, Dumas. Jefferson and the Rights of Ma: Jefferson and His Time, Volume Two.
London: Little, Brown and Company, 1951, p. 13.

[1] Malone, Dumas. Jefferson and the Rights of Ma: Jefferson and His Time, Volume Two.
London: Little, Brown and Company, 1951, p. 13.

[2] Malone, Dumas. Jefferson and the Rights of Ma: Jefferson and His Time, Volume Two. London: Little, Brown and Company, 1951, p. 13.

[3] Malone, Dumas. Jefferson and the Rights of Ma: Jefferson and His Time, Volume Two. London: Little, Brown and Company, 1951, p. 13.

[4]Meltz, Milton. Thomas Jefferson: The Revolutionary Aristocrat, Retrieved June 10, 2009 from  http://www.amazon.com/Thomas-Jefferson-Revolutionary-Aristocrat-
Biographies/dp/0531110699
[5] Meltz, Milton. Thomas Jefferson: The Revolutionary Aristocrat, Retrieved June 10, 2009 from  http://www.amazon.com/Thomas-Jefferson-Revolutionary-Aristocrat-
Biographies/dp/0531110699
[6] Meltz, Milton. Thomas Jefferson: The Revolutionary Aristocrat, Retrieved June 10, 2009 from  http://www.amazon.com/Thomas-Jefferson-Revolutionary-Aristocrat-
Biographies/dp/0531110699
[7] Hendrickson, David C., and Robert W. Tucker. Empire of Liberty: The Statecraft of
Thomas Jefferson. New York: Oxford University Press, USA, 1992, p.34
 

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