The White House Historical Association is a charitable nonprofit institution whose purpose is to enhance the understanding, appreciation and enjoyment of the White House. To fulfill its purpose, the White House Historical Association produces educational literature and films, develops special programs, and maintains this website interpreting the White House and its history and the persons and events associated with it. From private funding and the sale of its educational products, the Association supports the acquisition of artwork and objects for the White House collection and contributes to the conservation of the public rooms.
In 1961, when the National Park Service suggested that such an association be formed, the idea received First Lady Jacqueline Kennedy's ready approval. In July 1962, The White House: An Historic Guide was delivered to a public that had already ordered 10,000 copies. The guide is now in its 23rd edition.
The association also sponsors lectures, exhibits and other outreach programs. Thousands of schools, universities and libraries have received free educational materials about the White House. Traveling exhibits and videos are circulated to the presidential libraries and museums.
On January 1, 2010, the White House Historical Association established the David M. Rubenstein National Center for White House History at Decatur House, a research and educational institute housed at a National Trust for Historic Preservation site. Currently, the center provides ongoing educational programs for students, teachers, scholars, and the general public on the history of the White House and the President's Neighborhood. The center's future plans include a digital library, which will offer unparalleled opportunities for online research and distance learning; lecture programs for public audiences and scholarly symposia for academic audiences; tours for the general public on a scheduled basis; and open houses and family days on focused themes.
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