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Jefferson and sex

The accusations against Thomas Jefferson are deficient in any substantial
evidence and completely without merit.  These whispers serve only to
besmirch the reputation of a brilliant political thinker.  Thomas Jefferson
was the existential man in action.

There is no real evidence  to support of Thomas Jefferson having any
relationship with Sally Hemings.  The best evidence indicates it is  myth.
to  accuse Thomas Jefferson of fathering the children of Sally Hemings.  The
myth began with allegations made by James T. Callender.  His  rumours about
Jefferson were self indulgent.. Callender went public with the story in
1802, two years into Jefferson's presidency, angry that Jefferson had
declined to appoint him postmaster of Richmond, Virginia.

On 30 June  2000  The Thomas Jefferson Heritage Society, Inc. announced the
formation of the Scholars Commission on the Jefferson-Hemings Issue  to
re-examine the allegation that Thomas Jefferson fathered one or more
children by his slave Sally Hemings.

By testing 6 lines of Thomas Woodson's descendants, a man who claimed to be
Jeffersons' son by Hemings,  scientists concluded that he could not possibly
have been Thomas Jefferson's child. Scientists did find strong similarities
between the Y-chromosome from the descendants of Thomas Jefferson's uncle,
Field Jefferson, and those of descendants of Sally Hemings' who at the time
was 35,  youngest child, Eston, born when Thomas Jefferson was 65 and
suffering failing health.

The representative DNA sample from Field Jefferson establishes nothing more
than that Eston was probably fathered by one of more than 25 Jefferson males
living in Virginia at the time, a number of whom either lived at or
regularly visited Monticello and most of whom were much younger than the

There is evidence that President Jefferson invited his much younger brother
Randolph, who was between wives, to visit Monticello shortly before Sally
Hemings is thought to have become pregnant with Eston, and since the
intellectually-challenged Randolph was known to have enjoyed gambolling into
the early hours of the morning with Monticello slaves, he or his sons might
reasonably seem to be more likely suspects for the paternity of Eston

One of the many apparent flaws in the report of the Thomas Jefferson
Memorial Foundation issued earlier this year on this topic was the
assumption that Sally Hemings could only have had a single father to all of
her children. Not only is this in direct conflict with the allegation of
James T. Callender who first publicized the allegation, but it also ignores
a wealth of evidence from the era attributing paternity of some of her
children to one of the Carr brothers or to some other individual than the
Thomas Jefferson. The only apparent basis for such an unwarranted assumption
is that it makes it much easier to conclude that Thomas Jefferson was Eston
Hemings' likely father.


Ref The Jefferson-Hemings Myth: An American Travesty. Presented by The
Thomas Jefferson
Heritage Society, edited by Eyler Robert Coates, Sr. Charlottesville,
Virginia.: Jefferson Editions, 2001. ISBN:
Dr. Forrest McDonald, Research Professor of History, University of Alabama,
The Presidency of Thomas Jefferson; Lawrence, University Press of Kansas,
Dr. Harvey C. Mansfield, Jr., William R. Kenan, Jr., Professor of
Government, Harvard University, editor of Thomas Jefferson: Selected
Peter S. Onuf, ed: Jeffersonian Legacies, University Press of Virginia,
Charlottesville 1993

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