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Richmond Virginia Royalty

As contemporaries actively involved in the founding of our country, George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, James Madison and James Monroe knew and worked with each other and formed lengthy friendships.

Madison was the first dinner guest at Monroe’s new home and was a frequent overnight guest at Jefferson’s Monticello. Jefferson checked out the site of Ash Lawn-Highland for Monroe while Monroe was ambassador to France. Monroe served in the Continental Army under Washington, suffering wounds at the Battle of Trenton and surviving the winter at Valley Forge.

One place their paths converged was the state Capitol in Richmond.

A statue of Jefferson reading blueprints for the building greets visitors at the top of a new multistory underground entrance to the Capitol. A realistic statue of Washington carved during his lifetime stands in the center of the rotunda — Jefferson commissioned the sculptor, and Madison wrote the inscription. Busts of Jefferson, Madison and Monroe sit in alcoves around the rotunda, where all eight Virginia-born presidents are honored.