See also: White House (homonymy)
The White House is the official residence and the principal work place of the President of the United States. This building, built starting from sandstone of Aquia and painted in white, is inspired by the style géorgien. It is located at the 1600, Pennsylvania Avenue NW with Washington, cd.. The site belongs to the Parc of the President managed by the National Park Service.
The expression “White House” is often employed to indicate by extension the administration of the president.
Architectural contestThe new capital of the young republic is located on a ground yielded by the States of Virginia and the Maryland. These two States transferred the property from the ground to the federal government following the compromise concluded with President George Washington. The Congress charged the police chiefs with the District of Columbia with building the new city under the direction of the President. The architect of the White House was selected at the time of a competition which opposed 9 proposals. President Washington to the site went on July 16th, 1792 to make his decision, with the town planner Pierre Charles the Child. According to the registers, the passage in review of the various projects and the selection of the finalist were very short. The choice was made on the project of James Hoban, Irish of Charleston. A majority of the other architectural projects were awkward and naive. Washington was not completely satisfied by original work with Hoban, because it found that the building was too small, missed ornaments and would not be with the stature of a Head of State. On these recommendations, the house was increased of almost 30% and he was added a large hall of reception, current East Room. The latter was probably inspired by the big room of reception of Mount Vernon.
Architectural influencesThe building drawn by Hoban is largely inspired by the first two stages of Leinster House, a ducal palate located at Dublin and which is from now on the seat of the Lower House of the Irish Parliament. Many of other Irish country houses of the Géorgienne time was indicated like probable sources inspiration for the southern frontage in arc of circle, or, for details of interior like the old niches of Blue Room. Although there does not exist any document proving these influences, they are officially quoted in the guide of the White House and publications of the White House Historical Association .
The first official guide of the White House, published in 1962, suggests a bond between the plan of Hoban for the southern gantry, and the Château of Rastignac, a neo-classic castle localized with Bachellerie, in the Dordogne. This residence was built between 1812 and 1817, on the basis of former plan of the square Maison of Arlac, in the suburbs of Bordeaux (1785-1789). The bond between the two buildings was disputed by the fact that Hoban never visited France. However, it is proven that Thomas Jefferson visited the Special School of Architecture of Bordeaux in 1789 when it saw the sketches of Salat, the architect of the castle. On its return to the United States, it shared its discovery with Washington, Hoban, Monroe and Benjamin Latrobe.
ConstructionConstruction began with the installation from the first hones on October 13rd, 1792. The newspaper held by the commissioner in charge of the construction of the District of Columbia reports as well as the foundations were carried out by slaves. The majority of work on the house were carried out by immigrants, who for the major part did not have American nationality yet. The sandstone walls were set up by immigrants Scot, just like the pink in high relief and the garlands which overhang the northern entry. As for bricks and plaster works, they were carried out by Irish and Italian immigrants.
Initial construction was spread out over 8 years at a cost of: 232371.83 USD (what would correspond to approximately 2,4 million dollars, in value of 2005). The White House accommodated its first tenant dice on November 1st, 1800, whereas construction was not completed yet. Once finished construction, the porous sandstone, was coated with a mixture of Chaux, adhesive, Caséine and lead, to finally give to the building its color and its name.
NameIn the beginning, the building was called presidential palace or presidential manor . The wife of the president Madison, Dolley Madison, called it the Château of the President . In spite of an generally accepted idea, the term of " Blanche" house; was used before the war of 1812, at the moment when the manor was repaints after the fire of 1814. One however finds the first proof official of this denomination only in 1811. The name of executive manor was often employed in official contexts until President Theodore Roosevelt establishes the formal name in 1901 while making appear " White-Washington" house; on the heading of its writing paper. President Franklin Roosevelt modified it thereafter in " The Blanche" House; with the inscription " Washington" centered below. This convention perdure still today.
Although it was built only several years after the presidency of George Washington, it is supposed that the name comes from the name of the house of Martha Custis Washington (its wife): White House Plantation in the county of New Kent in Virginia. It is in particular the place where the first president and his wife were made the court in the middle of the 18th century.
Evolution of the building
Inauguration, in 1800, with the fire of 1814John Adams was the first president to be resided in the building, starting from November 1st 1800. Two days after its emménagement, he wrote a letter with his Abigail wife, in whom one finds a prayer for the building:
I request the Sky to grant his best blessing to this House and all those which will live it in the future. Can that only honest and wise men reign under this roof.Franklin Delano Roosevelt made register this blessing of Adams on the curtains of State Dining Room (Dining room State). Adams lived there only very briefly before Thomas Jefferson does not move in, which was interested much in the improvements to bring to the White House. With the assistance of Benjamin Latrobe, it drew the plans of the Colonnades East and West: small wings which make it possible to keep the domestic activities with the shelter of the glances. Nowadays, the halls of Jefferson connect the residence to the wings East and West.
In 1814, during the War of 1812, most of the city was burned by the British troops in reprisals of the fire of the Parliament of the High-Canada, at the time of the battle of York (current the Toronto). The White House was very damaged and only the external walls remained debouts. However, they had to be cut down because fire had weakens them enormously. After the rebuilding, they were painted in white to mask the damage caused by smoke.
Among the debris of the White House, only two objects could be saved: a painting of George Washington saved by the future first-lady, Dolley Madison, and a jewel box returned to president Roosevelt, in 1939, by Canadian who acknowledged that his/her father had subtilized it in Washington. The majority of the remains were irremediably lost at the time of the shipwreck of the British fleet carried out by the Phantom HMS. The ships which connected Prospect to Halifax were indeed taken in the middle of a storm in the night of November 24th 1814.
After the fire, Latrobe and Hoban conceived a new plan and followed the advance of rebuilding works. The northern Portique was built in 1824 and, although similar gantries were proposed by Latrobe during the rebuilding, after the fire of 1814, the two gantries were designed by Hoban. Contrary to a spread idea, the northern gantry was not copied from another building of Dublin, the Viceregal Lodge (from now on, the residence of the President d' Irlande). But makes some, its gantry dates according to the design from the gantries from the White House. One can note a variation of the Ionic order on the columns of the northern gantry, by the incorporation of pinks between the volutes. This was done to connect the new gantry to the entry, with the top of which pinks are engraved. The southern gantry was built in 1829. The similarity between this gantry and an elliptic gantry with the curved staircases of the Château of Rastignac is frequently underlined like a probable source. Decorations of the two gantries were carried out by Italian craftsmen come to Washington to help with the construction of the Capitole of the United States of America.
The construction of the Western WingThe White House was the target of attack on August 16th 1841 when the president of the time, John Tyler, opposed his veto to a bill concerning the establishment of the second bank of the United States. The gathering in front of the White House of members of the liberal party in anger turned to the riot. This one is to date the most violent show of force being ever unrolled in front of the White House of all the history of the United States.
At the time of the American Civil War, the White House started to lack place. There be also disputes on the level of the localization of the White House, just in the north of a channel and a marshy zone (which provided ideal conditions for the development of the Malaria and other diseases. The Brigadier general, Nathaniel Michler, was charged to find solutions with these interrogations. :
- 132 parts;
- 35 bathrooms;
- of the hundreds of offices, of which that of the president (Oval office celebrates it);
- 6 stages for an entire surface of: 5100 m ²;
- 412 doors;
- 147 windows;
- 28 chimneys;
- 8 staircases;
- 3 elevators;
- a tennis court;
- a track of bowling;
- a cinema;
- a track of jogging;
- a green of golf;
- a swimming pool.
The building is opened with the visit, narrowly controlled of course (approximately: 5000 visitors the every day).
The Executive ResidenceThe original building of the White House is in the center of the complex. Both Colonnade S (Is and Western), drawn by Jefferson, are used to connect the principal building to the Wings East and West. The Executive Residence lodges the apartments of the president, as well as the rooms of ceremonies and official receptions.
The first stage, the State Floor , is composed of the East Room, the Green Room, the Blue Room, the Red Room, the State Dining Room and the Family Dining Room. The second stage accommodates the Yellow Oval Room, the East Sitting Hall and the West Sitting Hall, the President' S Dining Room, the Treaty Room, the Lincoln Bedroom and the Queens Bedroom.
The closing of Pennsylvania Avenue was criticized by defense groups of the civic right in Washington D.C. According to them, this closing blocks circulation unnecessarily and enters in contradiction with the historical plan of the city. As for the considerations of safety, they note that the White House is much further away from the street than good number of other sensitive federal buildings.
Internet site of the White HouseThe White House has its official own site with the www.whitehouse.gov address. It was conceived under the administration Clinton and put in lined on October 17th 1994. There exist two versions different from the site which followed one another during its presidency and which from now on are filed by the National Files and Records Administration . They are still all the two credits and can be consulted with the following addresses clinton1.nara.gov and clinton2.nara.gov. They thus form part of the first numerical examples of conservation of media.
There of course exist versions pastiches of the site or diversion of flow. One can in particular quote the site whitehouse. COM which was in the beginning a political site of entertainment for adult who appeared in 1997. One can also quote the site whitehouse. org which is a parody of the official site and which disparages not only the Bush Administration, but also the presidential family and close relations of the President.
Counterparts of the White HouseUnder the presidency Truman, several embassies and consulates of the State Department were conceived on the model of the White House. There exists in particular a model reduced on the scale 1:25, in the park Minimundus with Klagenfurt in Austria, which is of an extreme precision (especially on the level of the Colonnades and Wings East and West). With Atlanta in Georgia, an almost complete model exists, even if outside is less precise than the precedent. It belongs to the manufacturer of houses, to Fred Milani, an American citizen born in Iran. In 2001, a Chinese business man built a model by running concrete. This Chinese model is almost exact from the point of view of external dimensions but deviates from the original on some details (in particular the angle of attack of the northern gantry). It also misses details engraved on the amount of the windows and with the top of the doors. The provision of the parts in this copy is also whimsical insofar as the Oval office is placed in the central residence, with the site of Blue Room in the original version. Opposite this counterpart a miniature of the Washington Monument is reproduced. Moreover, it also made build a counterpart of the Mont Rushmore on the scale 1:3, with the back of which the employees are placed.
By aillor, a counterpart of the White House, on the scale, was built by John and Jan Zweifel and is the subject of a road show through all United States.
AnecdotesA Cessna 150, controlled by Frank Eugene To twist, was crushed on the lawn of the White House in the night of the 11 with the September 12th 1994, without the United States Secret Service not being able to it to be opposed.
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