JAMES MADISON - Founding Gardener, Founding Environmentalist

#4 (1809-1817)

Perhaps one of the country's first environmentalists, Madison spoke out for the need to have a national botanic garden which came to fruition a year after he left office. Most importantly, his "Symmetry of Nature" speech in May of 1818 to the newly founded Agricultural Society of Albemarle, was a call for change to the current attitudes of agriculture and a new interelationship between earth and mankind.

He stated "that nature was not subservient to the use of man, not everything could be appropriated, and with the increase in the human part of the creation,.. nature's balance would collapse."1
Montpelier, home and farm of James Madison

Montpelier, home and farm of James Madison


1.  Founding Gardener's, Andrea Wulf, 2011