Randolph, Peyton

Philadelphia, PA — Completed in 1770, this Georgian building was the meeting place of the First Continental Congress in 1774.
Williamsburg, VA — Originally built in 1715, it was purchased in 1721 by Randolph’s father — who build a second structure — and willed it to his son. Peyton Randolph built a middle structure to unify the whole.
Richmond, VA — Completed in 1741, it was the first church in Richmond; in 1775, it was the site of the famous speech by Patrick Henry ending with “Give me liberty or give me death.

I set out on this ground, which I suppose to be self-evident, that the earth belongs in usufruct to the living; that the dead have neither powers nor rights over it. This, with its echo of the Declaration (self-evident) was Jefferson at his most terse. Except for the phrase in usufruct — a legalism meaning the right to use property for a certain time — Jefferson’s words could be chiseled in stone, or shouted on the hustings.

Richard Brookhiser
James Madison (2011)