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The Official 2022 White House Christmas Ornament Press Album

These images are being provided for press purposes only. For all other uses, please send your inquiries to rights@whha.org.
  • Official 2022 White House Christmas Ornament
    White House Historical Association
    retail
    ornament
    WHHA
    This photograph of the White House Historical Association’s Official White House Christmas Ornament was photographed by David Wiegold. The 2022 ornament commemorates the presidency of Richard M. Nixon, who held office from January 20, 1969 until August 9, 1974. The ornament represents what has become one of the White House's most cherished holiday traditions: the White House gingerbread house. Although gingerbread was used for holiday decorations and small gingerbread houses had previously been gifted to the White House, it wasn't until 1969 that White House Assistant Chef Hans Raffert built a traditional German A-frame style house for the Nixon family. Raffert's first gingerbread was decorated with white icing as well as colorful candies and gumdrops. Raffert continued making a gingerbread house in this fashion every year until his retirement in 1992. White House gingerbread displays became larger and more elaborate under White House Executive Pastry Chef Roland Mesnier, who oversaw the creation of festive villages, childhood homes, castles, national monuments and historic sites, and marzipan sculptures of the first families and their pets. During the George W. Bush presidency, a gingerbread replica of the White House became the standard that continues today. These gingerbread houses are often molded out of chocolate, weigh around 300 pounds, and are assembled and decorated by a team of confectionary experts.
  • Official 2022 White House Christmas Ornament
    White House Historical Association
    retail
    ornament
    WHHA
    This photograph of the reverse side of the White House Historical Association’s Official White House Christmas Ornament was photographed by David Wiegold. The 2022 ornament commemorates the presidency of Richard M. Nixon, who held office from January 20, 1969 until August 9, 1974. The ornament represents what has become one of the White House's most cherished holiday traditions: the White House gingerbread house. Although gingerbread was used for holiday decorations and small gingerbread houses had previously been gifted to the White House, it wasn't until 1969 that White House Assistant Chef Hans Raffert built a traditional German A-frame style house for the Nixon family. Raffert's first gingerbread was decorated with white icing as well as colorful candies and gumdrops. Raffert continued making a gingerbread house in this fashion every year until his retirement in 1992. White House gingerbread displays became larger and more elaborate under White House Executive Pastry Chef Roland Mesnier, who oversaw the creation of festive villages, childhood homes, castles, national monuments and historic sites, and marzipan sculptures of the first families and their pets. During the George W. Bush presidency, a gingerbread replica of the White House became the standard that continues today. These gingerbread houses are often molded out of chocolate, weigh around 300 pounds, and are assembled and decorated by a team of confectionary experts.
  • Pat Nixon with the 1972 Gingerbread House
    Unknown
    holidays
    Christmas
    State Dining Room
    State Floor
    In this photograph taken, on December 11, 1972, First Lady Pat Nixon poses for pictures next to the first annual gingerbread house on display in the State Dining Room. The edible A-frame house weighed seventeen pounds.
  • Patricia Nixon
    Henriette Wyeth
    official portrait
    This oil on canvas portrait of First Lady Patricia Nixon was painted by Henriette Wyeth in 1978. Mrs. Nixon oversaw renovations to parts of the White House including the China Room, the creation of the Map Room, and she had ramps installed for visitors with disabilities. Mrs. Nixon was the most-traveled first lady at the time, visiting thirty-nine states and at least twenty-three countries, including touring an active battle zone in South Vietnam. This portrait was hung on a wall in the Ground Floor Cross Hall of the White House on November 20, 1981. Richard Nixon was president from January 20, 1969 until August 9, 1974.
  • Pat Nixon and Julie Nixon Eisenhower with Gingerbread House
    Jack E. Kightlinger
    holidays
    food & drink
    State Floor
    State Dining Room
    Christmas
    gingerbread
    This photograph of First Lady Pat Nixon and daughter Julie Nixon Eisenhower appreciating the details of the White House gingerbread house was taken by Jack E. Kightlinger on December 13, 1971, during the Richard M. Nixon administration. The house featured the German A-frame design and was based on the story of Hansel and Gretel. It was created by then Assistant Executive Chef Hans Raffert for Mrs. Nixon, who was the first to start this holiday tradition.
  • White House Gingerbread House
    William Vasta
    holidays
    This is a photograph of the White House gingerbread house taken on December 20, 1999, by White House photographer William Vasta. Executive Pastry Chef Roland Mesnier and his team created gingerbread versions of the White House, the Washington Monument, the Jefferson Memorial, and Mount Vernon. The scene also included the Potomac river winding through the display. The theme chosen for 1999 was "Saving America's Treasures," highlighting the First Lady Hillary Rodham Clinton's program to help preserve important landmarks and historic artifacts.
  • 2021 White House Holiday Decorations
    David Wiegold
    State Floor
    State Dining Room
    winter holidays
    Christmas
    gingerbread
    food & drink
    decorations
    This photograph of the White House gingerbread house was taken by David Wiegold on November 29, 2021 during a press preview of the White House holiday decorations. Executive chef Hans Raffert created the first gingerbread house for First Lady Pat Nixon in 1969, setting the stage for a decades-long holiday tradition. The gingerbread house in 2021 featured eight community buildings in addition to the Executive Mansion. The buildings, including a hospital, schoolhouse, and post office, honored frontline workers during the COVID-19 pandemic. The gingerbread house was made of 55 sheets of baked gingerbread, 120 pounds of pastillage, 35 pounds of chocolate, and 25 pounds of royal icing. For their first year in the White House, President Joseph R. Biden and First Lady Dr. Jill Biden chose the theme, "Gifts from the Heart." The theme was meant to honor the things we cherish and bring us together despite the obstacles posed by a pandemic, time, and distance.
  • Pat Nixon and Julie Nixon Eisenhower with Press
    Otis Imboden
    press
    State Floor
    Christmas
    holidays
    State Dining Room
    In this photograph, First Lady Pat Nixon and her daughter Julie Nixon Eisenhower give a tour of holiday decorations to the White House Press Corps in the State Dining Room. On display nearby is a German A-frame gingerbread house, designed by assistant executive chef Hans Raffert. Raffert created his first A-frame gingerbread house for First Lady Pat Nixon in 1969, where they soon evolved into a beloved holiday tradition.
  • White House Gingerbread House, 1971
    Otis Imboden
    State Floor
    State Dining Room
    Christmas
    holidays
    This photograph shows a German A-frame gingerbread house designed by assistant executive chef Hans Raffert for the White House holiday season in December 1971. Raffert first designed an A-frame gingerbread house for First Lady Pat Nixon in 1969, where they subsequently became a holiday tradition.
  • Nancy Reagan Hosts Diplomatic Children's Party, 1981
    Joseph H. Bailey
    State Floor
    State Dining Room
    Christmas
    parties
    food
    gingerbread
    winter holidays
    In this photograph, taken by National Geographic photographer Joseph H. Bailey on December 14, 1981, First Lady Nancy Reagan poses with her young guests and the White House Gingerbread House during a Christmas party for the children of members of the Diplomatic Corps. The German A-Frame gingerbread house was designed by chef Hans Raffert, who also created the first White House Gingerbread House in 1969 for First Lady Pat Nixon.
  • Home for the Holidays Gingerbread House
    Unknown
    Christmas
    holidays
    food
    In this photograph, White House Executive Pastry Chef Roland Mesnier and First Lady Laura Bush talk to reporters in the State Dining Room about the White House gingerbread house during a press preview in December 2001. Inspired by the theme "Home for the Holidays," Mesnier recreated the White House as it would have looked during John Adam's presidency in 1800.
  • View of the South Portico
    Karl Schumacher
    South Lawn
    South Grounds
    This photograph is of the South Portico as seen from the lit fountain on the South Lawn of the White House. White House photographer Karl Schumacher took this photo on the evening of December 1, 1970, during the administration of Richard M. Nixon.
  • North View, Nixon Administration
    Joseph H. Bailey
    north view
    North Portico
    North Lawn
    This photograph of the north view of the White House was taken in June 1972 by Joseph H. Bailey during the administration of Richard M. Nixon. This photograph captures the North Portico and fountain illuminated by the lights along the north façade.
  • North View, Nixon Administration
    Joseph H. Bailey
    north view
    North Portico
    North Lawn
    This photograph of the north view of the White House was taken in June 1972 by Joseph H. Bailey during the administration of Richard M. Nixon. This photograph captures the North Portico and fountain illuminated by the lights along the north façade.
  • Mrs. Carter and Chef Raffert View 1979 Gingerbread House
    Warren K. Leffler
    winter holidays
    staff
    gingerbread
    food & drink
    decorations
    State Floor
    State Dining Room
    Residence staff
    Christmas
    In this photograph taken by Warren K. Leffler, First Lady Rosalynn Carter and White House Assistant Executive Chef Hans Raffert view a gingerbread house in the State Dining Room of the White House on December 10, 1979. Chef Raffert created his first German A-frame gingerbread house for the Nixon White House holiday decorations in 1969, where they subsequently became an annual tradition. Even after the A-frame design was no longer used, Raffert's skills were often used to create the Official White House Gingerbread House until his retirement in 1992.
  • Mrs. Clinton and Chef Mesnier Pose with the 1999 White House Gingerbread House
    unknown
    winter holidays
    staff
    gingerbread
    decorations
    State Floor
    State Dining Room
    Residence staff
    Christmas
    food & drink
    This photograph of First Lady Hillary Rodham Clinton and White House Executive Pastry Chef Roland Mesnier with the White House gingerbread house was taken in December 1999. Chef Mesnier and his team created gingerbread versions of the White House, the Washington Monument, the Jefferson Memorial, and Mount Vernon. The scene also included the Potomac river winding through the display. The theme chosen for 1999 was "Saving America's Treasures," highlighting Mrs. Clinton's program to help preserve important landmarks and historic artifacts.
  • Nancy Reagan Hosts Diplomatic Children's Party, 1981
    Joseph H. Bailey
    winter holidays
    parties
    State Floor
    State Dining Room
    Christmas
    gingerbread
    food
    In this photograph, taken by National Geographic photographer Joseph H. Bailey on December 14, 1981, First Lady Nancy Reagan poses with her young guests and the White House Gingerbread House during a Christmas party for the children of members of the Diplomatic Corps. The German A-Frame gingerbread house was designed by chef Hans Raffert, who also created the first White House Gingerbread House in 1969 for First Lady Pat Nixon.
  • 2020 White House Gingerbread House
    Matthew D’Agostino
    winter holidays
    gingerbread
    decorations
    State Floor
    State Dining Room
    food & drink
    This photograph of the White House gingerbread house in the State Dining Room was taken by Matthew D'Agostino on November 30, 2020 during a press preview of the year's holiday decorations. The gingerbread house featured detailed reproductions of the Executive Mansion, its East and West Wings, and historic gardens. It was the first White House gingerbread house to include reproductions of the Rose Garden and the Jacqueline Kennedy Garden. The White House pastry team used 275 lbs. of gingerbread dough, 110 lbs. of pastillage dough, 25 lbs. of chocolate, 30 lbs. of gum paste, and 25 lbs. of royal icing to recreate the People’s House with extraordinary detail. The holiday theme for 2020 was “America the Beautiful,” which celebrated the natural wonders of the American landscape. Selected by First Lady Melania Trump, the White House decorations also paid tribute to the courage and resilience of frontline workers, members of the military, and other American heroes. In 2020, American frontline and essential workers faced unique challenges due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • South View of the White House at Christmastime
    Unknown
    Christmas
    holidays
    south view
    South Portico
    This photograph presents a south view of the White House at night in December 1972, during the Richard M. Nixon administration. The house is framed between foliage strung with lights, likely two decorated Christmas trees. For the holiday season, wreaths are hung from the South Portico, and garland winds down its east and west steps. The official White House Christmas Tree can also be seen through the window of the Blue Room, in the center of the State Floor.
  • First Lady Pat Nixon with Santa Claus
    Joe McCary
    State Dining Room
    State Floor
    Christmas
    holidays
    This photograph of First Lady Pat Nixon with a man dressed as Santa Claus in the State Dining Room was taken on December 18, 1973. Santa Claus was there to entertain guests at the party for White House staff.
  • Nixon Family in Front of the Official White House Christmas Tree
    Oliver F. Atkins
    holidays
    Christmas
    State Floor
    Entrance Hall
    This photograph of President Richard M. Nixon and First Lady Pat Nixon, along with daughter Tricia, was taken by Oliver F. Atkins on December 21, 1969. The Nixons are captured standing in front of the official White House Christmas Tree in the Entrance Hall. The Christmas tree returned to its customary location in the Blue Room the next year.
  • Pat Nixon Shares Holiday Decorations in the East Room
    Otis Imboden
    press
    State Floor
    Event
    East Room
    Christmas
    holidays
    In this photograph, taken on December 13, 1971, First Lady Pat Nixon shares holiday decorations with the White House Press Corps. This photograph was taken in the East Room. Holiday decorations in the East Room included topiary in the sconces and a prominent 18th century crèche as a featured display.
  • Pat Nixon and Julie Nixon Eisenhower with Christmas Decorations
    Otis Imboden
    State Floor
    Christmas
    holidays
    Blue Room
    In this photograph, taken on December 13, 1971, First Lady Pat Nixon and her daughter Julie Nixon Eisenhower show off a velvet and satin Christmas ornament during a tour they led of the holiday decorations in the White House for the press. The ornament was created for the White House Christmas Tree in 1969, as part of a collection featuring the name and state flower from every state. The Official White House Christmas Tree for 1971 was adorned with the state flower ornaments from 1969, gold foil fan ornaments created for the 1970 holiday season, and gold foil angels newly added for 1971.
  • Nixon Family and Apollo 12 Astronauts by White House Christmas Tree
    Joseph J. Scherschel
    White House Guests
    State Floor
    Entrance Hall
    Blue Room Christmas Tree
    Christmas
    astronauts
    winter holidays
    In this photograph, taken by National Geographic photographer Joseph J. Scherschel, President Richard M. Nixon, First Lady Pat Nixon, and their eldest daughter Tricia pose with astronauts from the Apollo 12 lunar exploration mission and their wives by the official White House Christmas Tree in the Entrance Hall. Traditionally displayed in the Blue Room, for her first Christmas in the White House Mrs. Nixon chose to position the tree in the Entrance Hall. Nicknamed "The American Flower Tree," the tree was decorated with velvet and satin balls featuring each state's flower made by disabled workers in Florida. The crew of Apollo 12 included the second group of astronauts to walk on the moon, on November 19-20, 1969. Cdr. Pete Conrad, his wife, Jane; lunar module pilot Alan Bean, his wife, Sue; and command module pilot Richard F. Gordon, Jr. and his wife, Barbara were the overnight guests of President and Mrs. Nixon at the White House on December 20-21, 1969.
  • National Christmas Tree
    Unknown
    holidays
    Christmas
    South View
    This is a photograph of the National Christmas tree on December 19, 1972. The tree was a 70-75-foot Engelmann spruce from Medicine Bow National Forest, Wyoming and it was decorated with both green and transparent bulbs.