Built in
Remodeled in
1814 - 1817
$232,372 USD
1600 Pennsylvania Ave NW, Washington, DC 20500, United States
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The White House is the official residence and principal workplace of the President of the United States. At various times in history, the White House has been known as the “palace of the president,” the “President’s House,” and “Government House”. President Theodore Roosevelt officially gave the White House its current name in 1901.
Like its inhabitants throughout history, the house at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, Washington DC has seen conflict, controversy and surprising transformations. The elegant porticoed mansion you see today is very different from the austere Georgian house designed in 1800 by architect James Hoban Irish, during the presidency of George Washington.
Open free to the public, the White House reflects the history of the nation through the various collections and characters that each of its residents have left on the walls, serving as a global symbol of the American Nation.

Elevations James Hoban

On October 13, 1792, the first stone was laid and although Washington never lived in the presidential palace, supervised the construction. Most of the work was done by African Americans, some free, others slaves.

In 1800, when the house was almost finished, the second president of United States, John Adams and his wife Abigail moved to her.
12 years after its construction the War of 1812. The President’s House was destroyed by fire in the invasion of the British army broke out. James Hoban rebuilt according to the original design, but this time the sandstone walls were painted white.

The next major renovation at the White House took place in 1824 under President Thomas Jefferson who designated as “Supervisor of the Public Buildings” of the United States Benjamin Henry Latrobe, designer and illustrator.

Some of the occupants restorations performed more than others, but through the years the White House has been keeping pieces of the country’s history.


The presidential mansion is located at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW, in the District of Columbia, Washington, DC., Capital of United States, near other government buildings such as the Capitol and the Supreme Court. The District of Columbia is located between the states of Virginia and Maryland and along the Potomac River. The US Constitution what it is planned as a federal district under the exclusive jurisdiction of Congress therefore not part of any state.

Columbia name refers to Christopher Columbus (Christopher Columbus) and Washington was in honor of the first US president, George Washington.


The residence of the president of the United States is a large mansion neoclassical Federal style, with details that echo classical Greek architecture are made.

recorded 1855

The first plans for the construction of the Presidential Palace were made by the artist and engineer Pierre Charles L’Enfant who worked with George Washington to design a capital city for the new nation. L’Enfant thought a majestic home approximately four times the size of the current White House.
At the suggestion of George Washington, the architect of Irish origin James Hoban traveled to the federal capital and submitted a draft. Eight other architects also submitted designs, but Hoban won. The “White House” proposed by Hoban was a refined Georgian mansion in the style of Palladio. It would have three floors and over 100 rooms. Many historians believe that James Hoban design was based on the design of the Leinster House (1748) in Dublin, Ireland, excluding the north and south porticos, now the Irish parliament.


Building a mansion for the family of the president and his staff passed when Congress established the District of Columbia as the permanent capital of the United States, 16 July 1790. President George Washington helped select the site, along with Pierre city planner L ‘enfant, whose project posed a huge house, four times larger than the one built in 1800.


The architect was chosen in a contest which received several proposals and was won by James Hoban, Irish architect. Hoban was persuaded to submit a design, and Washington was the judge selected.
The building designed by Hoban was based on the first two floors of Leinster House had already built in Dublin, now the Irish Parlamente.


1st and 2nd floor flat

On October 13, 1792, George Washington laid the cornerstone of the building that would become a federal grand mansion neoclassical style, with details that echo classical Greek architecture are made.

During the 8 years of their construction they were spent $ 232,372, roughly equivalent to $ 63 million in 2007 dollars Scottish masons were brought in to do the work of the stone, as the mansion unlike the use of the time would be covered sandstone instead of red brick, but they did not know how to solve the sealing of the porous stone and turned to a thick whitewash that sealed like glue but at the same time made the gray stone disappear was replaced by white lime. Thus, from its earliest days, the president’s house was white and quickly gave him the nickname “White House.”

The house was considerably smaller than the grand palace originally designed by L’Enfant. Nevertheless when it was completed, the president’s house was the largest residence in the United States and would remain so until the 1860s.

Transfer and termination


When the second president of United States, John Adams, moved to the Presidential House on November 1, 1800, it was far from over. Adams and his family occupied the second floor and in the basement, which is currently the ground floor, all service personnel, cooks, laundry and cleaning other rooms stood. The old housekeeper’s room with its built-in wardrobes, is currently for Diplomatic Reception Hall.
At that time the House for the Public Hearing (East Room) was not finished and remained in that state for years, like the grand staircase in the far north is now the State Dining Room, and some of the the second floor rooms were used only for storage.


1801 – 1809

The second president to occupy the White House was Thomas Jefferson, entered in March 1801 and the residence testaba still unfinished. One of the first actions taken by the new resident was to build full bathrooms on the top floor to replace the outdoor toilet. He created a museum in the entrance hall, on wildlife with stuffed animals and Indian artifacts. He placed his private secretary at the southern end of the unfinished East Room, in the dining room a lounge for cabinet and pavilions on the east and west sides for servants and stables. An arc ordered to be built on the east side, as a first indication of the entrance to the guest wing, but later collapsed with a different design turned build and survived until 1859.


During the War of 1812 much of the city of Washington was burned by the British army. White House left standing only the outer walls. Despite the suggestions of the architect Latrobe remake with a new project, its new occupant, President James Madison decided to restore it and return it to its original appearance, under the supervision of the same architect who had built James Hoban. With a few small changes restoration was completed in 1817, and under the leadership of President James Monroe who decorated it with a modern flair.

1824 – 1830


The south and north of the building porches were added in 1824 and 1829, respectively, while John Quincy Adams opened the first flower garden of the residence. Subsequent governments continued reviewing and strengthening the interior through Congressional appropriations. The Fillmore added a library in the oval room on the second floor, while Arthurs famomoso hired to decorate decorator Louis Tiffany eaters this area.

1866 – 1872

After the Border Dispute San Juan and the withdrawal of troops, the daughter of President Johnson redecorated residence with bold geometric designs. large glasshouses were built on both sides of the mansion, providing flowers and plants of all kinds, as well as a nice place to talk or read a book.

Oval 1886


From 1873-1927 the White House received numerous architectural and decorative contributions. From a Victorian to replacement in 1891 of gas lamps by electric lights decoration.
In 1902 Theodore Roosevelt removes the Victorian decor accumulated over the last 30 years and returns to its roots with federal elements of Georgia. the first “wing West and East” was built and moved staff.

In 1927 the original wooden beams were replaced on the third floor by steel beams.


In 1948, President Harry S Truman added a much-discussed South Portico balcony on the second floor. Not long after this construction was discovered that the main body of the residence was structurally unstable. the structure was emptied and rebuilt using concrete and again steel beams to replace the original wooden beams. bathrooms were added in each room and opened the grand staircase to the entrance hall instead of Cross Hall.


The Kennedy renewed the decor and furnishings of the White House. The first lady created the Historical Association White House to help raise awareness of the heritage of it and got it was declared Museum to help preserve it.
Mrs. Kennedy also transformed the former Prince of Wales suite in a private dining room and the family kitchen became the first kitchen.


Since the 60s the architectural and decorative changes made by the various administrations within were limited because the White House is treated as a living museum.
In early 1990, outside the White House was recovered, some 40 layers of paint and repaired and repainted exterior sandstone withdrew. In 1993, the White House embarked on an extensive “greening” project aimed to reduce energy consumption.


The current White House has approximately 5109.67m2 built, spread over 6 floors that house 132 rooms and 35 bathrooms and other facilities.
The kitchen of the White House can serve dinner to a maximum of 140 guests and hors d’oeuvres to more than 1,000.




The sub-basements of the White House did not exist in the original structure. They were excavated in 1949 during the reconstruction carried out by Truman. They are most of the machinery that assists the residence. There is a full basement and sub-basement loft (partial plan). Some spaces as room air conditioning, water treatment plant, the control room and electrical switching room have two stories high.

Low level

This floor of the residence, at present, is connected to the first floor of the east and west wings, connection provided by the arrangement of the building on a small hill. The ground floor has 10 rooms, a main hall and 6 toilets.

First floor – Flat State

The first floor of the White House is often called the “State House” because this is where formal receptions held by the State. This floor is level with the second floor of the West Wing and the East Wing, as the residence is located on the upper level. This plant has 8 bedrooms, 1 main corridor, 1 input. Except for the entrance hall whose ceiling is 5.80m high and the room this to 6.10m, the rest of the ceilings soar to 5.50m.

Between floor First Floor

On the pantry, Usher’s office and the elevator lobby on the first floor a mezzanine that includes some small closets, another pantry for baking and watches salon is located.

Second floor – Family Residence

Distribution second floor

This plant has 16 rooms, a main hall and 6 bathrooms is the first family residence, where the bedrooms of the president and his family, private living room and some guest rooms nearby as facilities for guests officers are located in Blair House, across from the residence. The rooms of the family home have a height of 3.66m.

Third floor

The third floor of the White House is where the family relaxes. It includes a billiard room, a workout room, a solarium and lounge music added by the Clinton family.

West wing


From the beginning the little space that the mansion offered for all functions that should play a head of state was recognized. The second occupant of the residence, Thomas Jefferson, proposed extending the same building two extensions, east and west to connect the president’s house with adjacent office buildings. The design concepts of President Jefferson survives in part through the galleries that connect the residence of the White House with the east and west wings. The galleries are use for domestic use and do not provide additional office space. In the late nineteenth century conservatories they were built on the west side of the residence.

A few weeks after the stock market crash in 1929, the west wing was seriously damaged by fire due to an electrical failure.

First floor

The first floor of the west wing includes the Oval Office and offices of those closest to the president people. Also meeting rooms and offices for the Press Corps White House.

Second floor

This floor houses staff offices serving the president, attendees, who write speeches and legal advisors. This apartment was created in 1934 under President Franklin Roosevelt.

East wing

Representation wing this

First floor

The first floor of the east wing contains the lobby, which welcomes the public to visit the White House, to the east the Garden Room, the family theater of the White House and entrance for visitors to the ground floor of the White House.

Second floor

The second floor is occupied by the support staff, including the offices of the first lady, social secretary, the calligrapher of the White House staff and other formal correspondence.


The first presidential palace was a noble but simple house, made of sandstone pale gray subsequently coated with white lime and a masonry structure cone wooden beams that over the years have been replace it by concrete walls and beams steel. The pavilions and porches or columns supporting the roof of the entrance were also added later.

The White House requires 2,170 liters of paint to cover its outside surface. Inside they were placed 412 doors, 147 windows, 28 fireplaces, 8 staircases, and 3 elevators.

Solar panels

In 1977, Jimmy Carter installed solar panels on the roof of the west wing, on the cabinet room. During the Reagan era and due to leakage problems they were removed. In 2002 they reinstalled in the second Bush administration, together with new systems of solar collectors for pool.




Archive photos