Date: Fri, 12 Dec 1997 12:29:49 -0800

From: Peter Richardson prichard[AT SYMBOL GOES HERE]LINFIELD.EDU

Subject: Re: White House

from Bill Bryson's _Made in America_, p. 293:

On the original plans, the building was described only as "the Palace." No

one knows when people started calling it the White House--but, oddly, it

appears to have been before it was painted white. From 1800, when John

Adams became its first resident, to 1814, when the British ransacked and

partly burned it, the building was of unadorned gray Virginia freestone.

Only after the British had vandalized it was it decided to paint it white

to cover the smoke stains. So it is a little odd that people were calling

it the White House as early as 1810. In any case, the name didn't become

official until Theodore Roosevelt began printing it on the executive

mansion stationery sometime after 1901.

... not the last word, of course, but an interesting one because of the

color issue.

Peter Richardson