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Apr 28, 2021 Washington, D.C.

The White House Historical Association today released a NEW episode of The 1600 Sessions podcast detailing the important role of Freemasons in the construction and history of the White House.

See the podcast VIDEO here.

Since the laying of the White House cornerstone in 1792, Freemasons have included Irish White House architect James Hoban and several presidents - from George Washington to Gerald Ford.

In this episode, White House Historical Association President Stewart McLaurin interviews Jason Van Dyke, Director of Communications and Chris Ruli, Historian & Librarian of the Grand Lodge of Washington, D.C.

Ruli discusses the difficulties of researching where the cornerstone of the White House was laid, remarking that “up until about the Truman renovation in the 1950s, we really didn’t know anything about that event.”

Van Dyke delves into the masonic tradition of placing time capsules within cornerstones, stating that “we could probably assume that there is a cornerstone with a time capsule somewhere still deep underground and in the White House.”

The White House Historical Association recently released James Hoban: Designer and Builder of the White House, which tells the story of the Irish immigrant and freemason who designed and helped build the People’s House.

For information visit or contact

The 1600 Sessions

In this podcast series, White House Historical Association President Stewart McLaurin interviews luminaries, historians, and eyewitnesses to history about America’s most famous residence and office—the White House. Each episode includes a prominent guest or guests to discuss varying facets of White House history, including insights from former staff and many other topical issues.

The 1600 Sessions is available on iTunes, Google Play, Spotify, and Stitcher.

To hear this episode, visit

P.D.F. Resources

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About the white house historical association

First Lady Jacqueline Kennedy envisioned a restored White House that conveyed a sense of history through its decorative and fine arts. She sought to inspire Americans, especially children, to explore and engage with American history and its presidents. In 1961, the nonprofit, nonpartisan White House Historical Association was established to support her vision to preserve and share the Executive Mansion’s legacy for generations to come. Supported entirely by private resources, the Association’s mission is to assist in the preservation of the state and public rooms, fund acquisitions for the White House permanent collection, and educate the public on the history of the White House. Since its founding, the Association has given more than $50 million to the White House in fulfillment of its mission.

To learn more about the White House Historical Association, please visit

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