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Thomas Jefferson wanted the 13 colonies to become a nation. He was a good writer, so he wrote letters asking people to help the nation become free. He was was one of five men chosen to write the Declaration of Independence. He rented a house and stayed there by himself for 17 days. He searched in his mind for just the right words. When he had finished it, he gave it to the Continental Congress, and on July 4, 1776 it was adopted Jefferson was born on the family farm in Virginia to a wealthy family. His parents talked to him about the importance of serving others. When he was 17 he entered college and studied law. He studied hard and was at the top of his class. He soon became a lawyer in Virginia. He married and built a home called Monticello. Jefferson was secretary of state to George Washington. Then he served as vice president under John Adams. He was elected the third president of the United States in 1801. He completed the Louisiana Purchase which doubled the size of the nation. After two terms as president he returned to Monticello and farming. Thomas Jefferson died 50 years after the adoption of the Declaration of Independence.