By: Danielle Lucibello
And it’s not even Trump’s doing! At least, not yet anyway, he’s already changed the curtains, swapped in a different rug and moved some of the art around. Who knows what else he’ll touch.
When Harry Truman took office in 1945, the White House was in desperate need of repair after more than a century of bad fixer-upper jobs and horrible maintenance.Truman ordered a complete overhaul: adding a deeper foundation; implementing a structural steel frame instead of wood, and replacing cracked walls and drooping ceilings: gutting nearly everything basically. His maintenance work went from 1949-1952. The important materials leftover from the original White House were saved or repurposed.
The project made news headlines and Americans wanted in on the action. For a while, the commission sold some scraps as souvenirs, from small paperweights made up of trash to bricks and wood that buyers turned into everything from walking sticks to fireplaces. You know they bought it just so they could say “Look, I have a piece of the original White House!”
Most of the waste material is speculated to be in Fort Myer, just kept in storage in case they need it for building materials and whatnot. Fort Belvoir, in Virginia, also received materials that each put to use on projects for its own built space, like a roller skating rink as well as D.C’s Rock Creek Park.
It’s kind of hard to believe the White House had been so run-down before our time, considering what we see of it nowadays. Imagine being a construction worker back then and saying, “I helped rebuild the White House.” Pretty cool if you ask me.
Just as shocked as I am? Tell us in the comments below!