While the lab may not have been secret, it definitely was hidden from view. Here is the story about this hidden Jefferson's lab.
Thomas Jefferson’s Lab
Photo credit: University of Virginia
As the project manager supervising a renovation of the University of Virginia’s Rotunda, Matt Scheidt wanted to know how thick the Rotunda’s walls were, so he crawled through a hole in one of them and discovered a chemistry lab designed by Thomas Jefferson. The lab was constructed in the 1820s, toward the end of the Rotunda’s construction, and was walled off in 1840, due to changing, more sophisticated teaching methods. As a result, it survived both a fire in 1895 and extensive renovations in the 1970s.
Until October 2015, when Scheidt entered the Rotunda, the lost lab had remained a secret. Now, one of a rare few such old “chemical hearths,” the lab is displayed as part of an exhibit in the Rotunda’s visitor center.
Just imagine finding a lab on the campus of a major university, especially one from the 1820s. Talk about a well kept secret!
Coffee in the kitchen once again!