Jeremy and I were nerding out on American history the other night. I think it started when we were trying to figure out what to do during our little vacation. We love to take tours of historical homes when we travel, one of my favorites is the Monticello. When I was a kid I was completely fascinated by Thomas Jefferson and I loved to visit his house, full of little interesting architectural details and his inventions.
The Monticello website has lots of interesting info but some how I ended up on the White House website, which much to my surprise is really well done and packed with pictures, stories, interesting facts and even an interactive tour.
Clicking on the red boxes brings up a summery of the function of the room and in most cases a video.
I especially love to read about the art and decor of the White House, there is a section where you can see paintings of the Presidents and the first ladies. It's amazing how many first ladies were rather unattractive. Anyway, my favorite portrait is this one of Grace Coolidge.
It's so sweet with her dog Rob Roy looking so adoringly up at her. With each portrait is the option to read further about the subject- I learned for example that Grace Coolidge was a very popular first lady and after she left the White House she was voted as one of America's twelve greatest living women- you go Grace!
You can also take a room by room tour seeing all of the pieces of art in the room including chandeliers and other interesting fixtures...
I love this John Singer Sargent painting, The Mosquito Net, which hangs in the Green Room.
But what is the most amazing is a link on the White House Website.
Thanks to Google Art Project you can now take a truly interactive tour, pausing where you'd like, getting up close views of paintings, the drapes or whatever you want. Check out an overview of the tour...
And now check out this amazing technology for yourself...
I thought this was appropriate since tomorrow is Independence Day plus growing up so close to DC and being a 4th of July baby I'm pretty patriotic. I hope you enjoyed a little taste of our Nation's Capital via The White House!
Happy 4th of July!!!!