The memorial is constructed of marble from Vermont. which rests upon a series of granite and marble-stepped terraces. There are four panels in the interior which display lofty utterances from Jefferson.
On the panel of the southwest interior wall are excerpts from the Declaration of Independence, written in 1776:
"We hold these truths to be self-evident: that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain inalienable rights, among these are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness, that to secure these rights governments are instituted among men. We ... solemnly publish and declare, that these colonies are and of right ought to be free and independent states ... And for the support of this declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of divine providence, we mutually pledge our lives, our fortunes, and our sacred honor."
On the panel of the northwest interior wall is an excerpt from the 1777 Virginia Statute for Religious Freedom, except for the last sentence, which is taken from a letter of August 28, 1789, to James Madison:
"Almighty God hath created the mind free ... All attempts to influence it by temporal punishments or burthens ... are a departure from the plan of the Holy Author of our religion ... No man shall be compelled to frequent or support any religious worship or ministry or shall otherwise suffer on account of his religious opinions or belief, but all men shall be free to profess and by argument to maintain, their opinions in matters of religion. I know but one code of morality for men whether acting singly or collectively."
The quotes from the panel of the northeast interior wall are from multiple sources. The first sentence, beginning "God who gave ...", is from A Summary View of the Rights of British America. The second, third and fourth sentences are from Notes on the State of Virginia. The fifth sentence, beginning "Nothing is more ...", is from Jefferson's autobiography. The sixth sentence, beginning "Establish the law ...", is from a letter of August 13, 1790, to George Wythe.The final sentence is from a letter of January 4, 1786, to George Washington:
"God who gave us life gave us liberty. Can the liberties of a nation be secure when we have removed a conviction that these liberties are the gift of God? Indeed I tremble for my country when I reflect that God is just, that his justice cannot sleep forever. Commerce between master and slave is despotism. Nothing is more certainly written in the book of fate than these people are to be free. Establish the law for educating the common people. This it is the business of the state to effect and on a general plan."
The inscription on the panel of the southeast interior wall is redacted and excerpted from a letter of July 12, 1816, to Samuel Kercheval:
"I am not an advocate for frequent changes in laws and constitutions. But laws and institutions must go hand in hand with the progress of the human mind. As that becomes more developed, more enlightened, as new discoveries are made, new truths discovered and manners and opinions change, with the change of circumstances, institutions must advance also to keep pace with the times. We might as well require a man to wear still the coat which fitted him when a boy as civilized society to remain ever under the regimen of their barbarous ancestors."