Our earliest amusements
Following Jefferson's death in 1826, his granddaughter Virginia Randolph Trist wrote letters containing "all my childish recollections of my dear grandfather." The passage below describes games with "grandpapa."
"One of our earliest amusements was in running races on the terrace, or around the lawn. He placed us according to our ages, giving the youngest and smallest the start of all the others by some yards, and so on; and then he raised his arm high, with his white handkerchief in his hand, on which our eager eyes were fixed, and slowly counted three, at which number he dropped the handkerchief, and we started off to finish the race by returning to the starting-place and receiving our reward of dried fruit -- three figs, prunes, or dates to the victor, two to the second, and one to the lagger who came in last."