The White House is one of the most recognizable homes in the world. There are some pretty awesome things you may not know about this beautiful home so let’s discuss. 

  • While the living quarters for the First Family may be small compared to the luxury mansions that other world leaders may enjoy, the White House as a whole is massive. It has 132 rooms and 35 bathrooms. The White House is 55,000 square feet. According to recent appraisals, the White House is valued at over $400 million!

  • With all those rooms, there are of course some really fun places like the White House bowling alley, a movie theatre, and a music room. Outside there is a tennis court, two pools

  • The White House has six floors and three elevators.

  • Most people know but some do not know that the President must pay for their meals, staff for parties, hair and make up, dry cleaning, and any other services they require. 

  • Of course, there is a “secret entrance” to the White House. It is underground and was created during WWII so that the President would have a safety entry and exit from the residence. 

  • In 1948, due to the budget going mainly towards other things, the White House didn’t receive the necessary maintenance and was literally collapsing. Fear not, it was obviously fixed.

  • Speaking of maintenance, it takes 570 gallons of white paint to repaint the house.

  • For those who missed history class, the White House you see today isn’t the original White House. The original White House got burnt down in 1814 after being torched by the British.

  • The White House we see today was finished in 1817 designed by the same Irish architect who designed the original house, James Hoban.

  • Oh yeah, and George Washington never lived in the White House but rather President John Adams and his wife Abigail were the first residents.

  • And did you know that it wasn’t called the White House until 1901. President Teddy Roosevelt did away with the name “Executive Mansion” and chose the obvious title for the residence. 

  • Talk about creepy, 10 people have died at the White House including President William Henry Harrison and President Zachary Taylor. Many have reported to say the White House is haunted. The most famous believer of the ghostly halls is Winston Churchill who claims that he was scared to death by President Lincoln’s ghost.

  • You know the Lincoln Bedroom? Yeah, President Lincoln never slept there. 

  • As most know, the West Wing wasn’t a part of the original White House plans. In fact, the West Wing itself was only meant to be temporary. But then the Oval Office was built there in 1909. Like most things in Washington, it wasn’t up to code so President Herbert Hoover rebuilt it with some tough steel and even added a basement.

  • The White House has also been the home to a ton of pets. Of course the most famous are the dogs and cats but the forgotten animals that called it home were possums, a racoon, tiger cubs, horses, birds, lion cubs, a wallaby, a donkey, a pygmy hippopotamus, cows, a bobcat, bear cubs, sheep, a snake, and an alligator. Even with that extensive list, I’m sure I’m missing some.

  • In the basement of the White House you can find a dentist, a chocolate shop, and a flower shop.

  • If you ever see press with coffee in their hands, they can thank Tom Hanks. Yes, Forrest Gump is the reason a coffee machine and an espresso machine are in the press break room. He ordered them for the rooms after realizing there weren’t any.

  • The historic French furniture that you see in the blue room was purchased by President James Monroe. 

  • Speaking of furniture, the moving staff that works tirelessly on inauguration day have 12 hours to swap furniture. 

The White House is incredibly unique. Maybe one day, you can call it home.

Caroline C.
FFL Cabinet Member
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