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  • Scars from the Fire of 1814 on Stonework
    Erik Kvalsvik
    White House
    east view
    renovation
    War of 1812
    This photograph of burn marks on the White House stonework was taken by Erik Kvalsvik in 1990, during the George H.W. Bush administration. In preparation for the White House cornerstone's bicentennial in 1992, the White House underwent a renovation that included the removal of approximately 30 layers of paint. This process revealed scarring beneath the paint, sustained when the British burned the White House during the War of 1812.
  • Stone Swag Surrounding the North Entrance
    Erik Kvalsvik
    White House
    north view
    This black and white photograph by Erik Kvalsvik shows the north entrance during a maintenance project. The North Door surround, carved in high relief around the window, is surmounted by a detailed swag carved into two giant stones, a total of twelve feet in length. The carving above the door includes roses and a stylized garland of American white oak leaves and acorns, a theme repeated in the transom, along with more conventional acanthus leaves, griffins, and classical flowers. The photograph was taken during Ronald Reagan's presidency (1981-1989).
  • North Portico Ionic Column Carved by Italian Francisco Jardella and Stripped of Paint
    Richard Cheek
    North Portico
    This color photograph by Richard Creek shows the North Portico without paint while undergoing maintenance. It was taken during Ronald Reagan's presidency (1981-1989).
  • Window Ornament, Detail
    Bruce White
    North Portico
    This detail photograph by Bruce White shows a portion of the window ornament on the North Portico. Carved acanthus leaves support the ledge and a portion of the Grecian chain is visible. The bottom of the foremost window is unpainted showing the Aquia Creek sandstone underneath.
  • Windows, Detail
    Bruce White
    north view
    North Portico
    This photograph is of the exterior windows on the North facade of the White House. The windows have alternating triangular or arched pediments and ornamental features such as guillouche or braiding and acanthus leaves. The bottom of the foremost window is unpainted showing the Aquia Creek sandstone underneath.
  • Window Ornament, North Portico
    Bruce White
    North Portico
    This photograph by Bruce White shows the ornamental details beneath a window on the North Portico. Between supports of carved acanthus leaves there is a Grecian chain, also known as a guilloche border. The bottom of the foremost window is unpainted showing the Aquia Creek sandstone underneath.
  • Preserved Sycamore Roots
    Unknown
    south grounds
    This photograph of preserved roots from a sycamore tree was taken in 1950. The roots were spared from a newly dug utility ditch. The White House Grounds are an arboretum, and the trees are exceptionally well cared for. These roots can be used as grafts to grow a new, identical sycamore tree.
  • Seneca Quarry
    Martin Radigan
    quarry
    This photograph by Martin Radigan shows what remains of the Seneca Quarry, from which early stone for the White House was sourced. It was located in Maryland near the Potomac River where the stone could be easily transported back to the capital.
  • Seneca Quarry
    Martin Radigan
    quarry
    This photograph by Martin Radigan shows what remains of the Seneca Quarry, from which early stone for the White House was sourced. It was located in Maryland near the Potomac River where the stone could be easily transported back to the capital.
  • Split Outcroppings in Aquia Quarry
    Martin Radigan
    quarry 
    This photograph shows where craftsmen split and harvested the stone from the natural outcroppings in Aquia quarry on Government Island for building materials. After splitting the stones the craftsmen would evaluate their quality deciding whether to discard the stones or send them to the building site. In 1791, the federal government purchased Wiggington’s Island, now Government Island, to provide stone to build the President’s House and the United States Capitol. From 1791 through the 1820s extensive quantities of freestone were extracted from this site.
  • Split Outcroppings in Aquia Quarry
    Martin Radigan
    quarry 
    This photograph shows where craftsmen split and harvested the stone from the natural outcroppings in Aquia quarry on Government Island for building materials. After splitting the stones the craftsmen would evaluate their quality deciding whether to discard the stones or send them to the building site. In 1791, the federal government purchased Wiggington’s Island, now Government Island, to provide stone to build the President’s House and the United States Capitol. From 1791 through the 1820s extensive quantities of freestone were extracted from this site.
  • Discarded Stone at Aquia Quarry
    Martin Radigan
    quarry 
    This photograph is of the unused stone at Aquia quarry. The stones bear the chisel marks from splitting and smoothing indicating they were being prepared for transport, but ultimately abandoned for some physical defect. In 1791, the federal government purchased Wiggington’s Island, now Government Island, to provide stone to build the President’s House and the United States Capitol. From 1791 through the 1820s extensive quantities of freestone were extracted from this site.
  • Discarded Stone at Aquia Quarry
    Martin Radigan
    quarry 
    This photograph is of the unused stone at Aquia quarry. The stones bear the chisel marks from splitting and smoothing indicating they were being prepared for transport, but ultimately abandoned for some physical defect. In 1791, the federal government purchased Wiggington’s Island, now Government Island, to provide stone to build the President’s House and the United States Capitol. From 1791 through the 1820s extensive quantities of freestone were extracted from this site.