Thomas Jefferson's portable writing desk
The Declaration of Independence was composed on this mahogany lap desk, designed by Jefferson and built by Philadelphia cabinet maker Benjamin Randolph. Jefferson gave it to Joseph Coolidge, Jr. (1798-1879) when he married Ellen Randolph, Jefferson's granddaughter. In giving it, Jefferson wrote on November 18, 1825: "Politics, as well as Religion, has it's superstitions. These, gaining strength with time, may, one day give imaginary value to this relic, for it's association with the birth of the Great Charter of our Independence." Coolidge replied, on February 27, 1826, that he would consider the desk "no longer inanimate, and mute, but as something to be interrogated and caressed."
my lineage is also Rebecca Fitz Randolph who married John Combs...
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