The White House, formerly Executive Mansion, is the official residence and principal workplace of the President of the United States, located at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW in Washington, D.C. It has been the residence of every U.S. president since John Adams, who lived there in 1800 and 1801 at the very end of his term.
The house was designed by Irish-born James Hoban, and built between 1792 and 1800 of white-painted Aquia Creek sandstone in the Neoclassical style.
In 1814, during the War of 1812, the mansion was set ablaze by the British Army in the Burning of Washington, destroying the interior and charring much of the exterior. When reconstruction of the building began, the burnt walls were painted over in white, giving rise to the name “The White House.” Although the building was officially called the Executive Mansion throughout the 19th century, it was known in popular culture as the White House, a name which was formally adopted in a decree signed by President Theodore Roosevelt in 1901 shortly after his accession.
The White House was the site of Diana McGraw's second organized protest against the continued American occupation of Germany, in December 1945. The picketers were joined by Representative Jerry Duncan and Senator Robert Taft, and covered heavily by the media. In response, PresidentHarry Truman, personally came out to speak to McGraw in a vain attempt to convince her that her actions were incorrect.
The White House was the residence of the US Presidents within Washington DC from 1800 until 1881. This included the period of the War of Secession from 1861 to 1862. In November of 1862, the peace was negotiated within the White House, officially bringing the war to an end.
In the years that followed, the White House still housed the Presidents of the United States until 1881. When the Second Mexican War began, the commander of all US forces, Major General William Rosecrans refused to surrender the city, which resulted in Washington being attacked by Confederate artillery, damaging the White House. President James G. Blaine evacuated the seat of government to Philadelphia, where he established his residence in Powel House. Although Washington remained the de jure capital of the United States, its government buildings, including the White House, were generally used only for ceremonial occasions.
During the Great War, the White House was destroyed during a much more thorough bombardment of the city that destroyed most of its major monuments and allowed Confederate forces to occupy the city for most of the war. The White House was rebuilt after the war.
President Upton Sinclair stayed in the White House while attending the funeral of his predecessor, President Theodore Roosevelt, in 1924. He described the experience as "like living in a museum".