THE WASHINGTON D.C. ARCHITECTURE COLLECTION
Anthony Giannini, USAFR, Design Series
The WASHINGTON D.C. ARCHITECTURE ornament for 2014 is The White House. Exquisitely and entirely finished in brilliant 24KT gold on specially treated premium brass, the 1st annual National Architecture ornament and model is three-dimensional and meticulously handcrafted to museum quality by American ornament masters in Rhode Island, USA. Each year, based on architectural and symbolic concepts by Anthony Giannini, the White House Gift Shop creates a new National Architecture ornament and model to commemorate great American architects and architectural symbols of America.
By supporter requests, we will concept, create, and make a new heirloom piece every three to four months for the National Architecture Collection -- collected, gifted, and traded worldwide by discerning collectors, diplomats, patriotic citizens, heads-of-states, and ministers of many countries.
During November, 2014, we will release the 4th heirloom architecture in the collection: THE UNITED STATES SUPREME COURT soon followed by the 5th piece – The Washington Cathedral – the spiritual center for many American Presidents. This exciting new National Architecture collection of the White House Gift Shop, Est. 1946 by permanent order of President Harry S. Truman is endless -- for we will add all significant American architecture of politically symbolic importance not only in Washington D.C. but also across America.
A BRIEF HISTORY OF THE WHITE HOUSE
The White House 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 in 1800 and is the symbolic center of democracy and freedom not only in America but for many countries yet struggling for freedom from tyranny and oppression.
Designed by Irish-born James Hoban, Neoclassical architecture of the White House was built between 1792 and 1800 of white-painted Aquia Creek sandstone. When Thomas Jefferson moved into the White House in 1801, he, along with architect Benjamin Henry Latrobe, expanded the House outward, thus creating two colonnades meant to conceal storage and stables.
In 1814, during the War of 1812, the White House was set ablaze by the British Army in what is now called the Burning of Washington, destroying the interior and charring much of the exterior. Almost immediately, reconstruction began and President James Monroe moved into the partially restored Executive Residence in October 1817. Rebuilding continued with the addition of the South Portico in 1824 and the North Portico in 1829.
In 1901, President Theodore Roosevelt relocated all work offices consequent of overcrowding to the newly constructed West Wing in 1901. In 1909, eight years later, President William Howard Taft expanded the West Wing and created the first Oval Office which was eventually moved as operations expanded. The third-floor attic was converted to living quarters in 1927 by augmenting the existing hip roof with long shed dormers. A newly constructed East Wing was used as a reception area for social events, and President Thomas Jefferson's colonnades connected the new wings. In 1946, President H. S. Truman added the now iconic South Balcony. East Wing alterations were also completed in 1946, thus creating additional office space. By 1948, the White House’s load-bearing exterior walls and internal wood beams were close to failure. In 1946, President Harry S. Truman (who originated the White House Gift Shop by permanent order), began the complete reconstruction of the interior of the White House: Interior rooms were completely dismantled, a new internal load-bearing steel frame was constructed inside the walls, and once this massive restoration was completed, interior rooms were rebuilt.
The Executive Residence is made up of six stories: Ground Floor, State Floor, Second Floor, and Third Floor, as a two-story basement. The term White House is often used as a metonym for the Executive Office of the President of the United States and for the president's administration and advisers.
Today, the White House Complex includes the Executive Residence, West Wing, East Wing, the Eisenhower Executive Office Building—the former State Department, which now houses offices for the President's staff and the Vice President—and Blair House, a guest residence.