"Miracle on Chestnut Street reminds us that the creation of our nation was indeed-and still is-a miracle." -From the foreword by Bill Barker, premiere Jefferson interpreter.
Tom Jefferson, a young plantation owner from Virginia, was the least likely member of the Second Continental Congress to make a name for himself. When he arrived in Philadelphia in 1775 it was by default; he had been sent as a substitute for a distant cousin. He resented having to leave his sickly wife and young daughters at home where they needed his attention. Most of all, he disdained politics.
Yet we associate Jefferson's name more than any other with what happened on the most important day in American history: July 4, 1776. Notwithstanding many other defining moments in our nation's past-Appomattox, Pearl Harbor, the Apollo moon landing, 9/11 to name a few-the Declaration of Independence that Jefferson wrote and the Continental Congress adopted on that date symbolizes more than any other event what America stands for as a nation.
Now, for the first time, the story of that historic event is told from Jefferson's point-of-view. Drawing from his letters, journals, diaries and extensive on-site research, Milton Nieuwsma recreates the sixteen most important months in Jefferson's life: from his election to the Continental Congress to the Declaration of Independence.It's the story of how a young man entered the world stage through the back door-and how the ideas he expressed in that document still resonate in the 21st century.