I’m experimenting with new looks for the site.
Peter Sharkey provided the photos and details for the addition of a new room in the White House Museum: the East Wing’s East Reception Room, a space used to gather and greet those who have business in the First Lady’s domain.
I’ve added a hotspot to the map of the first floor of the East Wing, but it’s unlabeled for now. It’s the large green space on the map.
The official Flickr account of the White House, well exercised by the Obama administration, remains blank after three weeks into the succeeding administration. Pete Souza’s work (which is still available at a new Obama White House account) was not of much interest to a White House enthusiast. He hardly shot a single photo of a space rather than people, and very few in non-public parts of the White House. (Architectural Digest salvaged things by documenting the Obama White House in its final days.) We would hope that the incoming administration would change have a different photographic style, but we’ll apparently have to wait a bit longer.
Added a bunch of Nixon-era photos and a little earlier, courtesy of Patrick. Thanks! See What’s New.
Added a load of more pictures, thanks in part to Pete Sharkey. Pete is the genius who created the 3D models of the White House and the floor plans.
Look inside the Obama Residence (hat tip to MJSchultz)
Trump is using Clinton’s gold drapes and Reagan’s sunburst rug in the Oval Office in his opening days. George W Bush also used Reagan’s rug in his first days.
The Reagan, Bush 2, and Obama rugs are all very beautiful, in my personal opinion. I don’t think the gold drapes go well with the rug (Clinton’s rug was blue) or with the walls, which Obama changed from its traditional white to the pale beige stripes. But Obama’s drapes (like Reagan’s) were burnt orange, which I didn’t care much for.
The Obamas’ decorating style (care of Michael Smith) was very different from first families before. In many ways, it was more contemporary (particularly in the choice of art) and casual, with the repeated use of bark-like patterns in the carpets (even in the State Dining Room). The Treaty Room, in particular, took on the look of a swanky Chicago penthouse.
This is likely to change markedly in the coming months.
Published a load of updates today. Check out the What’s New page.
Thanks to all for the notes. I’ve busied myself for many months now doing local history research, but I promise to return to the White House Museum to do some updates this week. The Architectural Digest photos, the presidential library additions, and more!
Former first lady Nancy Reagan has died at the age of 94. President Ronald Reagan died in 2004. Best wishes to the family.
Yesterday, former President George H W Bush suffered a fall in his summer home in Maine and remains hospitalized. He broke a neck vertebrae, according to family spokesman Jim McGrath.
Best wishes to him and his family. He turned 91 in June and until now has remained very active.
Jack M pointed me to a nice clutch of photos on the Gerald Ford Library Facebook page, including one of Peter Graves playing the clarinet with the Marine Corps Band.
Brent L sent me an image from a Clinton Library video that featured President Clinton talking in and about various rooms. But early one, there was a brief walk-thru of a few rooms which happened to include the master bedroom. There was even a very brief glimpse of the Living Room, but not clear enough for a screen capture.
As far as I know, there have never been any official photos of the Clinton master bedroom and living room published, so this video was a bit of a shock. Still, it’s quite low quality and only really shows the color of the room and basic decor, particularly that the walls were covered in a large, strong pattern of wallpaper in place of the Reagan bamboo forest wallpaper. Very interesting.
If anyone knows of a higher quality version of this video and can get a better screen cap, I’d be grateful.
I haven’t had much to do in the White House Museum lately. I make small corrections when someone points them out, but the Obama administration hasn’t released much in the way of interesting photos of White House spaces, and I haven’t come across any interesting cache of old photos for a while.
However, I’m grateful to Patrick Phillips-Schrock, who donated again to fully sponsor the Green Room blueprints. He is working now on a second book about the White House. I think there are probably some photos and information in his first book that I should try to incorporate into the site as well.
Other sponsorships are still available, and of course donations of any sort are always welcome. The site it not especially expensive to maintain, but the blueprints were costly, and finding a way to preserve them (and, hopefully, make copies for sale) will be a challenge. One day, I hope to see them hang in a proper museum.
Perhaps in the meantime, I’ll photograph parts of them and post those on the blog here.
I’ve posted dozens of photos from the Kennedy Library in the last few days. Most are terrific color pictures that fill in areas for that period that I didn’t have good photos for already. An additional few also replace inferior versions of the same photos that I’d found in books and elsewhere.
I’ve added some new photos from the Kennedy Library of various parts of the Residence in 1960-1962. More to come.
See the What’s New page (link at right).
Former first lady Barbara Bush has been hospitalized in Houston for treatment of a “respiratory-related issue.” Best wishes to her and her family.
A little cross-promotion, if you’ll pardon the intrusion….
Some friends of mine (actual, not just in my head) called Friends in Your Head are going to do a marathon of audio commentaries live-streamed on December 7. I AM SPONSORING (from my Zarban.com website) AND PARTICIPATING. We’ll be trading off over a 24-hour period as we talk thru all the Harry Potter movies as well as other topic in between.
It’s a charity event for the Against Malaria Foundation. Please consider throwing a little of your hard-earned cash that way!
It came out a couple of weeks ago, but with few details, that the White House has gotten a set of solar panels. Now Earthtechling provides the photographic evidence.
A White House official confirmed to the Washington Post Thursday that installation had begun on fitting the President’s residence with solar panels.
Former President Bush was hospitalized yesterday to have a stent placed to open a blocked artery. He should return to his normal schedule by tomorrow. Best wishes to him and his family.
Long-time White House press corps fixture Helen Thomas died the other day at the age of 92. She served UPI and other news organizations for decades, from 1961 to 2010. Best wishes to her family and friends.
Added several new pics from the all the way back to 1866 to 1947.
Edit: As always, on the What’s New page.
Added several new pics from the 1920s and 1930s.
Edit: As always, on the What’s New page.
UPDATE: 5/19… With no explanation, GoDaddy resolved the access issue, but the result is that it completely wiped my entire site. Wow.
I’m uploading everything again now. It’s going to take a couple of days before it’s all back in place.