Jefferson and Mont Blanco

Maria Eppes, daughter of Thomas Jefferson, was unable to attend the inauguration of her father on March 4, 1801 because she was pregnant with her second child, Francis W. Eppes. Chesterfield residents were very proud of their connection with Jefferson who they had voted for overwhelmingly.

Maria and her husband, John Wayles Eppes, lived at  Mont Blanco, also known as Mount Blanco, a plantation that sat on a bluff high above the James River. The name Mont Blanco is said to have been suggested by Thomas Jefferson due to the height of the bluff and the expansive views across the broad river valley below. The plantation house, that burned in the 1950s, was located where the subdivision Mount Blanco is located today off North Enon Church Road.

Eppes “assembled four full-blooded bays at Bermuda Hundred” for the later use of his distinguished father-in-law’s presidential coach,” according to “Chesterfield: An Old Virginia County.” In 1803, Eppes became a United States Representative and later a Senator from Virginia. When Eppes went to Congress, Maria stayed home at Mont Blanco.

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