More Kennedy photos

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.

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New West Wing construction being completed

The Washington Post reports that construction going on for years around the West Wing is being completed now, with the fences and such coming down and the equipment silenced. The official line is only that the utilities have been upgraded: sewers, storm drains, steam pipes, and so on, and not that any additional office space, parking, or bomb shelter has been created. If that’s true, it seems like a missed opportunity.

Truman gest busy

My hat is off to Matthew, who directed me to a terrific find…

The December 13, 1948 issue of Life magazine, wherein President Truman’s East Wing and West Wing first floors are diagrammed with offices designated. What a find! The fun starts on page 35….

Thanks, Matthew!

I’ve added images of the wing diagrams and ordered a copy of the magazine from eBay. When that comes, I’ll scan it and re-do the diagrams so the labels are more readable.

What do these images tell us that we didn’t already know? Well, they show that we (Pete Sharkey and I) have the East Wing elevator on the wrong side of the corridor, and that the main hall there is a little too wide, which distorts our depiction of the offices on the east side. It’s hard to say what the modern orientation of rooms is, since walls may have been moved in the past 64 years, so I’ll leave those as they are. The West Wing diagram shows that the swimming pool dressing rooms were still very likely intact and generally clarifies the north side. And of course both diagrams show who occupied which offices, which is of historical interest.

Obama rug

Obama Oval Office rugVisitor Mark A has sent me a fantastic picture of the 23 x 30-foot Obama rug for the Oval Office, created by Scott Group Custom Carpets, the same company that created previous carpets for the Oval Office, State Dining Room, and (I believe) Air Force One.

I was able to straighten it out and create a simulated overhead view that is very convincing and fairly high resolution. This adds to our little collection of recreations that include the Bush 2, Clinton, and Reagan rugs, but this is certainly the best of them. Thanks to Mark and special thanks to the Scott Group!

New front page

I’ve changed the front page. A little cheeky, perhaps.

I’ve also changed the links on the right, since I took the mirror down months ago. And a couple of weeks ago I added a picture of the VP’s office, with new blue walls. Nice. Too bad we don’t get to see more.