Jefferson's watch key to face auction

First published: 11-01-2010

The rare and extremely personal watch key keepsake was created for the revered president as a means of further remembering his young wife Martha Wayles Jefferson, who died at the remarkably young age of 33.

Following the birth of the couple's sixth child, her condition deteriorated over a period of months and she finally passed on September 6th 1782.

The piece is created from gold, is engraved and has a visible braided lock of hair from Martha, created especially for Mr President, who was a well-known watch collector.

It will go up for sale at the end of the month and is expected to fetch between $40,000 and $80,000 (£24,750 and £49,500).

Thomas Jefferson was the third president of the United States and served two terms between 1801 and 1809 before being succeeded to the role by James Madison.

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