Facts and Events
Thomas Jefferson Randolph (September 12, 1792 – October 8, 1875) of Albemarle County was a planter and politician who served in the Virginia House of Delegates, was rector of the University of Virginia, and was a colonel in the Confederate Army during the American Civil War. He was notable as the oldest grandson of President Thomas Jefferson. He helped manage Monticello near the end of his grandfather's life and was executor of his estate.
Since the late 20th century, Randolph has been notable for having been shown to give false information in telling the historian Henry Randall that his uncle Peter Carr (Thomas Jefferson's nephew) was the father of Sally Hemings' children. (His grandfather the president had been rumored to have children with Hemings.) Randolph was likely trying to deflect attention from his grandfather, Thomas Jefferson, as he admitted there were Hemings' children who strongly resembled the president. The Carr story was the basis for historians' denials of Jefferson's relationship from 1868 to 1998. Since the late 20th century and a DNA study disproving any Carr genetic connection to Eston Hemings, the youngest son of Sally Hemings, most historians accept that Jefferson had a long relationship with Sally Hemings and fathered her six children. Most scholars continue to hold that view, although a minority, including the 2001 Report of the Scholars Commission and Andrew Holowchak's 2013 book Framing a Legend, espouse a contrarian view of the Jefferson–Hemings controversy.