Extract from Ellen W. Randolph Coolidge Comments on Henry S. Randall’s Manuscript Chapters for Life of Thomas Jefferson

Mr Jefferson had a most decided taste for music and great natural dispositions for it. His ear was singularly correct and his voice, though he never sang except in the retirement of his own rooms, was sweet and clear and continued unbroken to a very late period of his life. My chamber at Monticello was over his, and I used not unfrequently to hear him humming old tunes, generally Scotch songs but sometimes Italian airs or hymns. This was I think between whiles, in the intervals of his occupations. My mother inherited his taste & talent for music. I have heard persons play with more execution on the piano than she did, but none with more feeling and expression.

Tr in Letterbook (ViU: Ellen Wayles Randolph Coolidge Correspondence); partially dated; at head of text in Coolidge’s hand: “Some remarks on the first chapters of Mr Randall’s book which he sent me in MS. in 1853, & which I returned as I read them.”
Ellen W. Randolph Coolidge
Date Range
January 1, 1853 to December 31, 1853
Quotes by and about Thomas Jefferson
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