Mrs. Kennedy, John F. Kennedy, Jr., and White House Butlers in the West Sitting Hall
This photograph of Jacqueline Kennedy and her son John F. Kennedy, Jr, posing for a photograph with White House butlers in the West Sitting Hall prior to her final departure from the White House was taken by Robert L. Knudsen on December 6, 1963. After removing her personal items, Mrs. Kennedy rearranged the remaining furnishings to cover bare spaces in an effort to make the house more welcoming to President Lyndon B. Johnson and his family.
The West Sitting Hall is often a favorite for first families. But until 1869, the room was the location of an open stairwell connecting the State Floor to the private residence. President Ulysses S. Grant had the staircase replaced with a smaller one and the room slowly took shape. During the 1902 Theodore Roosevelt renovation, the stairwell was completely removed, allowing the West Sitting Hall to connect with the Center Hall and the rest of the Second Floor residence. The room is noted for the large arched window that mirrors the one in the East Sitting Hall, on the opposite end of the Center Hall.