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Where Hospitality Makes History: State Visits

Since World War II, an ever-lengthening procession of foreign leaders has come to 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue to confer on global problems. These dignitaries are often formally entertained at the White House, and an invitation to attend such a function is highly coveted. Certainly a State Dinner to honor a visiting head of government or a reigning monarch is one of the


An interview with Allida M. Black

To enhance First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt's "My Day" newspaper columns, Allida M. Black, Director and Editor of The Eleanor Roosevelt Papers and Research Professor of History & International Affairs at The George Washington University, sat down for an interview covering topics from the Roosevelt's style of entertaining to what the White House was like during World War II.


The Life and Presidency of Jimmy Carter

James Earl Carter Jr. was born on October 1, 1924, in the small rural town of Plains, Georgia, about 150 miles south of Atlanta. His father, James Sr., was a businessman and farmer. His mother, known to the nation as Miss Lillian during her son’s presidency, was a nurse who served as a Peace Corps volunteer after her children were grown and wr


Mapping Lady Bird Johnson's Whistle-Stop Tour

Less than a month before the 1964 presidential election, First Lady Lady Bird Johnson traveled for four days through the American South by train. In a practice known as whistle-stop campaigning, the first lady set out with her team, invited guests, and members of the press aboard the personalized “Lady Bird Special.” They visited eight states and stopped in forty-seven towns. The


Eliza McCardle Johnson: Conflicting Memories and Vanishing Evidence of the Enslaved Past

In 1980, Margaret Johnson Patterson Bartlett, great-granddaughter of First Lady Eliza McCardle Johnson and President Andrew Johnson, gave an oral interview at Harpers Ferry about the history of her family. Alluding that her ancestors wanted to keep certain family secrets hidden from the public, Mrs. Bartlett recalled when her father sold documents to the Library of Congress in 1904: “My daddy [Andrew Jo