Thomas Jefferson was a founding father and one of the most important figures in the formation, and early years, of the United States. He achieved many things in his life including; author and signatory of the Declaration of Independence, 2nd Governor of Virginia, 1st Secretary of State, 2nd Vice President, 3rd President and much more. He was born on April 13, 1743 in Shadwell, Virginia in the family home. He began his political career in 1775 when he served as a delegate to the Second Continental Congress. It was at this congress that he met John Adams (founding father and 2nd President) and the two remained friends for the rest of their lives. Let’s take a look at the final days of his life.
Jefferson’s failing health
In July 1825 it was clear to those around him that his health was failing. It is believed that he was suffering from a number of medical conditions. By May 1826 he was too frail to leave Monticello (his home) and by June he was completely confined to his bed.
Final hours and death
On July 3 1826 he developed a fever and his condition rapidly deteriorated. His family and doctor were with him during this time and he began to plan his own funeral. His final words came at 8:00 PM when he asked his doctor “Is it the fourth yet?” Jefferson died just before 1:00 am on July 4. Amazingly his death came on the 50th anniversary of the signing of the Declaration of Independence, which was also the same day that John Adams died (he died a few hours after Jefferson). Jefferson had a quiet funeral, as per his request, the next day which was attended only by his family and some friends.
Cause of death
There is no clear cause of Jefferson’s death, but it was believed that he was suffering from pneumonia as well as possible blood infection and/or kidney failure.