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Echoes From the White House
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THE CHANGING WHITE HOUSE

From 1792 From 1817 From 1902 From 1952 1792-1817:
page 2 of 3

Hobans' architectural plan for the first White House
Hobans' architectural plan for the first White House
The Maryland Historical Society

Text of the brass plate Text of the brass plate
White House Historical Association

1792
  • L'Enfant is dismissed and Thomas Jefferson places an ad in the nation's leading newspapers announcing a competition for designs for the president's new house.

  • Irish born architect James Hoban wins the competition, earning him a gold medal worth $500.

  • Hoban works with George Washington and they decide that the new two-story structure will be made of stone or brick, enhanced by elegant gardens and lawns.

  • The first cornerstone is laid on the southwest corner.

  • An inscribed brass plate is placed atop the foundation and pressed into the mortar underneath the cornerstone which was set on top of the plate.



1797
  • Plans for federal office buildings to be built on each side of the White House mark the first intrusions into the President's Park.

John Adams' letter to federal department heads
 John Adams' letter to federal department heads ordering the relocation of government offices from Philadelphia to the District of Columbia, 15 May 1800. United States Commissioners of the City of Washington Records
Library of Congress

1800
  • John Adams moves in to an incomplete house, which is known as the President's House, the Executive Mansion, or the President's Palace.


A conjectural drawing of John Adam's unfinished office
A conjectural drawing of John Adam's unfinished office
White House Historical Association





1792-1817: page 2 of 3

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