In 1776, he was the principal author of the Declaration of Independence. Age: 33.
In 1779, elected governor of Virginia. Age: 36.
In 1785 appointed Minister to France. Age: 42.
1n 1789, appointed Secretary of State in George Washington’s first administration. Age: 46.
In 1796, he became Vice President due to his second place finish in the presidential election. John Adams won. Age: 53.
In the 1800 election he redeemed himself and became President. Age: 57.
The following summary of his presidency is quoted from: http://sc94.ameslab.gov/TOUR/tjefferson.html
“Federalist leaders remained adamantly opposed to Jefferson, but the people approved his policies. Internal taxes were reduced; the military budget was cut; the Alien and Sedition Acts were permitted to lapse; and plans were made to extinguish the public debt. Simplicity and frugality became the hallmarks of Jefferson's administration. The Louisiana Purchase (1803) capped his achievements. Ironically, Jefferson had to overcome constitutional scruples in order to take over the vast new territory without authorization by constitutional amendment. In this instance it was his Federalist critics who became the constitutional purists. Nonetheless, the purchase was received with popular enthusiasm. In the election of 1804, Jefferson swept every state except two--Connecticut and Delaware. Jefferson's second administration began with a minor success--the favorable settlement concluding the TRIPOLITAN WAR (1801-05), in which the newly created U.S. Navy fought its first engagements. The following year the Lewis and Clark Expedition, which the president had dispatched to explore the Louisiana Territory, returned triumphantly after crossing the continent. The West was also a source of trouble, however. The disaffected Aaron Burr engaged in a conspiracy, the details of which are still obscure, either to establish an independent republic in the Louisiana Territory or to launch an invasion of Spanish-held Mexico. Jefferson acted swiftly to arrest Burr early in 1807 and bring him to trial for treason. Burr was acquitted, however.
Jefferson's main concern in his second administration was foreign affairs, in which he experienced a notable failure. In the course of the Napoleonic Wars Britain and France repeatedly violated American sovereignty in incidents such as the Chesapeake affair (1807). Jefferson attempted to avoid a policy of either appeasement or war by the use of economic pressure.”
In 1819, he founded the University of Virginia. Age: 76.
On July 4, 1826, at the age of 83, Thomas Jefferson died.
If you wish to know the mind of America, it is a good idea to read a bit about the character and the being of those who created it. This man, Thomas Jefferson, deserves to be studied and embraced. He, as much as any human being, formed the mind of America. This entire website could be dedicated to his accomplishments and his wisdom and his fundamentals. Of the latter, this essayist finds this simple thought to be first among many:
‘It is incumbent on every generation to pay its own debts as it goes. A principle which if acted on would save one-half the wars of the world. ‘
Jefferson did not live for politics. He served his community and his nation. He asked that his grave stone reflect only the following: “author of the Declaration of American Independence, of the Statute of Virginia for religious freedom, and Father of the University of Virginia”