Andrew Jackson developed the Hermitage, which he purchased in 1804, from a small two-story log house into a working cotton plantation, the source of his wealth. Through funding, including a challenge grant that helped the site raise an additional $1.1 million, the NEH helped the Hermitage restore the home’s interior; preserve its antique furnishings; implement educational exhibitions; and analyze an archaeological investigation into the site’s slave quarters. Combined, these initiatives ensure that visitors learn about nineteenth-century plantation life in the South and our 7th president, in all of their complexity. The NEH has also funded the Hermitage’s collaboration with other institutions. With Middle Tennessee State University, the Hermitage has provided professional development workshops for 320 K-12 teachers on the history of the estate, Andrew Jackson, and nineteenth-century America. Most recently, the Hermitage worked with Thomas Jefferson’s Monticello to digitally archive the 800,000 artifacts, once belonging to slaves, that have been found on the site’s former slave quarters. These will be hosted on the Digital Archive of Comparative Slavery.
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