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  • Garden Tour Program, Carter Administration
    White House Calligraphy Office
    program
    South Grounds
    drawings & plans
    maps
    This is the unfolded internal page of a program created for a public White House gardens and grounds tour during the administration of President Jimmy Carter (1977-1981). The program includes a greeting from First Lady Rosalynn Carter, a map of the South Grounds including sites of presidential tree plantings, and information about the history of the gardens and their uses. Before the late-19th century, private citizens wandered the White House South Grounds like a public park, but by the Calvin Coolidge administration (1923-1929), the grounds were closed to the public due to security and privacy concerns. However, just as First Lady Jacqueline Kennedy opened the White House to the public with controlled public tours, in 1972 First Lady Pat Nixon established the tradition of hosting White House garden tours. During the anticipated event, which expanded to being held two weekends a year, lucky members of the public have a chance to view the first family's private gardens. To view the complete program, see 1127095. This program is part of a personal collection belonging to former White House Executive Chef Henry Haller. Haller served five first families and their distinguished guests as executive chef of the White House from 1966-1987.
  • James Hoban White House Competition Design
    James Hoban
    drawings & plans
    White House
    This plan was drawn by James Hoban circa his 1793-1794 designs for the White House. Hoban, an Irish-born architect, won the competition to design the President's House. The competition was announced by then-Secretary of State Thomas Jefferson and the prize for the winner was $500 or a medal of equal value. This drawing captures an initial plan for the North Front of the White House. Winfield Parks photographed this plan in 1962.
  • James Hoban White House Competition Design
    James Hoban
    drawings & plans
    White House
    This plan was drawn by James Hoban circa his 1793-1794 designs for the White House. Hoban, an Irish-born architect, won the competition to design the President's House. The competition was announced by then-Secretary of State Thomas Jefferson and the prize for the winner was $500 or a medal of equal value. This drawing captures an initial plan for the North Front of the White House. Winfield Parks photographed this plan in 1962.
  • James Hoban White House Competition Design
    James Hoban
    drawings & plans
    White House
    This plan was drawn by James Hoban circa his 1793-1794 designs for the White House. Hoban, an Irish-born architect, won the competition to design the President's House. The competition was announced by then-Secretary of State Thomas Jefferson and the prize for the winner was $500 or a medal of equal value. This drawing captures an initial plan for the North Front of the White House. Winfield Parks photographed this plan in 1962.
  • First Stop, the Stone Yard at Tiber Creek
    Dahl Taylor 
    drawings & plans 
    This drawing by Dahl Taylor is of the Stone Yard at Tiber Creek. Here the stones were graded for quality, and selected for the walls or ornamental carvings. It is one in a series of eleven drawings illustrating the journey of the stones used to build the White House from Aquia Quarry to the building site.
  • At the Building Site, Finishing the Stone
    Dahl Taylor 
    drawings & plans 
    This drawing by Dahl Taylor is of a stonemason carving a piece of exterior molding at the building site of the White House. It is one in a series of eleven drawings illustrating the journey of the stones used to build the White House from Aquia Quarry to the building site.
  • At the Quarry, Splitting the Stone
    Dahl Taylor 
    drawings & plans 
    This drawing by Dahl Taylor is of a stonemason further splitting the stone hewed from a rock formation. The stonemason taps the inserted nine iron rods or “points” with a small mallet to separate the stone. It is one in a series of eleven drawings illustrating the journey of the stones used to build the White House from Aquia Quarry to the building site.
  • Old Basement Groin Vaulting
    Dahl Taylor 
    drawings & plans 
    This drawing of the White House groin vaulting was done by artist Dahl Taylor. The groin vaulting and a support system of arches was originally constructed in the old basement of the Executive Mansion by stonemasons under the supervision of Collen Williamson and Jeremiah Kale. The original vaulting survived until the Harry S. Truman renovation from 1948-1952.
  • Basement Entrance, North Side
    Benjamin Henry Latrobe
    drawings & plans
    North Portico
    This elevation shows Benjamin Henry Latrobe's original plans for the basement entrance on the north side of the White House. Situated beneath the raised platform that supported the main entrance, this basement doorway included Collen Williamson's flanking rustication around the door and keystone. This design feature was widely popular in the 18th Century.
  • At the White House Building Site, Finishing the Stone
    Dahl Taylor 
    drawings & plans 
    This drawing by Dahl Taylor depicts two stonemasons finishing the details on decorative stones for the White House. One stonemason smooths a stone cornice with his mallet and chisel. The other carves an acanthus leaf onto a window console. It is one in a series of eleven drawings illustrating the journey of the stones used to build the White House from Aquia quarry to the building site.
  • At the Building Site, Finishing the Stone
    Dahl Taylor 
    drawings & plans 
    This drawing by Dahl Taylor is of a stonemason smoothing a section of a stone cornice with his mallet and chisel. It is one in a series of eleven drawings illustrating the journey of the stones used to build the White House from Aquia quarry to the building site.
  • At the Building Site, Finishing the Stone
    Dahl Taylor 
    drawings & plans 
    This drawing by Dahl Taylor depicts a stonemason tracing a guilloche [border], or braid onto a piece of stone using a template.[needs a space] It is one in a series of eleven drawings illustrating the journey of the stones used to build the White House from Aquia Quarry to the building site.
  • At the Building Site, Finishing the Stone
    Dahl Taylor 
    drawings & plans 
    This drawing by Dahl Taylor is of stonemasons smoothing and polishing the stone by rubbing it with a [delete a] another stone or using a flat chisel. It is one in a series of eleven drawings illustrating the journey of the stones used to build the White House from Aquia Quarry to the building site.
  • At the Building Site, Finishing the Stone
    Dahl Taylor 
    drawings & plans 
    This drawing by Dahl Taylor is of a stonemason refining the volute on one of the heroic pilasters. A pilaster is an ornamental architectural feature designed to look like supporting column. It is one in a series of eleven drawings illustrating the journey of the stones used to build the White House from Aquia Quarry to the building site.
  • Upriver, From Quarry to Building Site
    Dahl Taylor 
    drawings & plans 
    This drawing by Dahl Taylor is of three workers delivering stone from the quarry to the building site by ferrying it up the Potomac River and into Tiber Creek. It is one in a series of eleven drawings illustrating the journey of the stones used to build the White House from Aquia Quarry to the building site.
  • At the Quarry, Splitting the Stone
    Dahl Taylor 
    drawings & plans 
    This drawing by Dahl Taylor is of three workers splitting the stone in Aquia quarry. One man holds the “drill”—a threaded wrought-iron spike—while the other two strike the drill with their stone hammers. After alternating strikes, the seated man turns the drill several times, boring down as far as possible, and the striking resumes. When the process was complete, they would go down the line and repeat the same steps with a new hole until the stone was separated from the rock formation. It is one in a series of eleven drawings illustrating the journey of the stones used to build the White House from Aquia Quarry to the building site.
  • Loading the Stone onto an Oxcart
    Dahl Taylor 
    drawings & plans 
    This drawing by Dahl Taylor is of workers loading the stone from the quarry onto an oxcart to[transport to a stone boat for delivery to the building site. It is one in a series of eleven drawings illustrating the journey of the stones used to build the White House from Aquia Quarry to the building site.
  • Ceremonial Trees Garden Plan
    Sharon Bradley-Papp
    drawings & plans
    This drawing of a garden plan was made by Sharon Bradley-Papp around 1996. It highlights the trees planted by presidents and first ladies on the North and South Grounds of the White House. The more than three dozen commemoratives represent only a small portion of the White House trees, but they are among the most venerable.
  • Mr. Aspinwall's Gallery
    Harper's Weekly
    drawings & plans
    This drawing of Mr. Aspinwall's Gallery was published by "Harper's Weekly" in 1859. It is likely that W. W. Corcoran hung his paintings in a similar style, one above the other, in his house in the northwest corner of Lafayette Square in Washington, D.C. The house, at H Street and Connecticut Avenue, was located near the White House.
  • Letter from Thomas Jefferson to Benjamin Henry Latrobe
    Thomas Jefferson
    letter
    drawings & plans
    This letter from President Thomas Jefferson to Benjamin Henry Latrobe is dated May 22, 1807. In it, Jefferson sketches a decorative landscape for the White House Grounds. Thomas Jefferson was closely involved with the construction of the White House in its earliest days. Latrobe is best known as the architect who designed the U.S. Capitol, St. John's Church, and the Decatur House in Lafayette Square, the White House colonnades, and the Madison state rooms. He was also the chief engineer for the U.S. Navy.
  • Extended West Wing Intended Excavation
    Thomas Jefferson
    drawings & plans
    This sketch of the White House Grounds was drawn by Thomas Jefferson in the early 1800's. It depicts his plan for the White House Grounds, and features his proposed excavations for an extended west wing.
  • Latrobe Landscape Sketch
    Benjamin Henry Latrobe
    drawings & plans
    This sketch was included in a letter to President Thomas Jefferson from Benjamin Henry Latrobe sent in 1807. It depicts his ongoing landscape projects at the White House. The earth was too high for the extension of the west wing and needed to be excavated. The South Grounds were also being enclosed by an irregular semicircular stone wall. Latrobe is best known as the architect who designed the U.S. Capitol, St. John's Church, and the Decatur House in Lafayette Square, the White House colonnades, and the Madison state rooms. He was also the chief engineer for the U.S. Navy.
  • Elevation of the South Front of the President's House
    Benjamin Henry Latrobe
    drawings & plans
    This drawing of the White House was created by Benjamin Henry Latrobe in 1817. It shows the elevation of the south front of the White House. St. John's Church appears over the right hand, behind the east colonnade. Latrobe is best known as the architect who designed the U.S. Capitol, St. John's Church, and the Decatur House in Lafayette Square, the White House colonnades, and the Madison state rooms. He was the chief engineer for the U.S. Navy.
  • Hoban's Preliminary White House Specifications (Part II)
    James Hoban
    drawings & plans
    This list was written by James Hoban, designer and architect of the White House, to the Commissioners of the Federal City on October 30, 1792. The list outlines Hoban's preliminary specifications for the President's House. Hoban lists, among other things, his supply specifications for the flooring, scaffolding, joists, and girders. Following President George Washington's wish, the President's House would be a house of stone. Please see images 1113630 and 1113628 for parts I and III.
  • White House, North Elevation
    Brian F. Pederson
    Hugh D. Hughes
    Richard A. Ventrone
    drawings & plans
    This elevation plan of the North Front was completed as a part of the 1988-1992 Historic American Buildings Survey (HABS) of the sandstone White House walls. The survey, which began during the Jimmy Carter administration and lasted more than twenty years, removed more than 30 coats of white paint and preserved the sandstone walls that dated back to the construction of the Executive Mansion. Though the layers of paint protected the delicate sandstone, they also obscured the intricate stone carvings. The survey also allowed for experts to study and record the stonework done so many years before. The elevation plan is a precise, stone-by-stone scale drawing as the house appeared in 1830, before the addition of the North Portico.