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Office Wing at Jefferson's Poplar Forest

Thomas Jefferson’s country retreat house and plantation “Poplar Forest” in Forest, Virginia was the very first house in the United States to be octagonal. Jefferson designed and had the house built starting in 1806 and had the “Office Wing” built on the east side. This housed the kitchen, smokehouse, storage and laundry. Jefferson borrowed this wing concept from plates in Palladio’s Four Books of Architecture and he had used the same concept at Monticello. Here at Poplar Forest he had built only a single Eastern Wing. Jefferson also made a similar wing to the President’s house in Washington DC when he was president. On top of the wing, Jefferson made a walking terrace with a strong roof. In this roof were hidden “rooflets” or tiny side roofs that drained the water off sideway to the little drains you see. The fence on top was added recently for code and tourists. In the evenings, Jefferson used to take his often visiting granddaughters out on a walk on the “terras”. 


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Written by JessButtery

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