Senior Trip to Washington D.C. – Day 4

Washington D.C. March 8, 2023

It is Senior Trip time at Great Hearts where seniors throughout our academies have the opportunity to visit our nation’s capital and see the historical places and context for so many of their discussions regarding human nature, freedom, liberty, justice, and many other ideals and virtues.

Glendale Prep Senior Jacob RickeyFollow one senior, Jacob Rickey, as he gives us a daily peak at some of the amazing sites they will experience this week, through his eyes and in his own words. Catch up with the trip and read about days one and two, and day 3 before you proceed with today’s entry.

Wednesday, March 8th
Written by Jacob Rickey, Great Hearts Senior

MonticelloWe got up bright and early again this morning, not to the liking of most of our group, but we did it anyway because we had a long road trip ahead of us. We took a 3-hour bus ride from Washington D.C. up to Monticello, just outside of Charlottesville, Virginia to see Thomas Jefferson’s house.

Editor’s Note: Monticello was the primary plantation of Founding Father Thomas Jefferson, the third president of the United States, who began designing Monticello after inheriting land from his father at age 26. In 1768 he contracted for the clearing of a 250 feet square site on the topmost point of the 868-foot mountain where he played as a boy. He would name this mountain Monticello, and the house that he would build and rebuild over a forty-year period took on this name as well. He would later refer to this ongoing project, the home that he loved, as “my essay in Architecture.” Due to its architectural and historic significance, the property has been designated a National Historic Landmark. The current U.S. nickel features a depiction of Monticello on its reverse side. At Jefferson’s direction, he was buried on the grounds, in an area now designated as the Monticello Cemetery.

We took a great tour of the home and saw all of the more modern types of technology that he made for the house. When pulling one door shut, another door would automatically shut with it, which was a crazy thing to have at the time. He also had a cool clock that could not only tell the time, but could also tell what day it was – based on how high or low on the wall that some cannon balls were hanging.

Our school motto is Truth, Goodness, and Beauty and we experienced the beauty in the house and the gardens that surrounded the property. The views were breathe taking. We learned a lot about Jefferson through his home.

After the tour we had some free time to explore the grounds on our own before boarding the bus for the long ride back. Once back in D.C., the bus dropped us off at the Thomas Jefferson Memorial to tour a few of the memorials along the Tidal Basin, including the Franklin Delano Roosevelt Memorial.

Stay tuned for Day Five, where we will be visiting Arlington National Cemetery!

Do you have a story or know of a story that you would like to see featured at Great Hearts?  Please contact

Back to Press Room