The Lincoln Bedroom In The White House

Home » White House History » The Lincoln Bedroom In The White House

The lincoln bedroom in the white house – Nestled within the hallowed halls of the White House, the Lincoln Bedroom stands as a testament to presidential history and American legacy. From its inception to its present-day grandeur, this iconic chamber has witnessed countless moments of significance, serving as a sanctuary for presidents and a symbol of national pride.

Through its architectural splendor, unique design elements, and rich history, the Lincoln Bedroom invites us on a captivating journey into the heart of American power and the lives of its leaders.

History of the Lincoln Bedroom

The Lincoln Bedroom is one of the most famous rooms in the White House, and it has a long and storied history. The room was originally designed by architect James Hoban in 1792, and it was intended to be the master bedroom for the President of the United States.

However, President George Washington never actually slept in the room, and it was not until President Abraham Lincoln took office in 1861 that the room became known as the Lincoln Bedroom.

Lincoln used the room as his personal office, and he often met with advisors and cabinet members there. He also used the room to sign the Emancipation Proclamation, which abolished slavery in the United States. After Lincoln’s assassination in 1865, the room was renamed in his honor, and it has been used by every president since then.

Occupants and Notable Events

The Lincoln Bedroom has been occupied by some of the most famous people in American history. In addition to Lincoln, the room has been used by President Ulysses S. Grant, President Theodore Roosevelt, President Woodrow Wilson, and President Franklin D.

Roosevelt. The room has also been the site of many important events, including the signing of the Treaty of Versailles, which ended World War I.


The Lincoln Bedroom is a symbol of American history and culture. It is a reminder of the great leaders who have served our country, and it is a place where important decisions have been made. The room is also a beautiful example of American architecture, and it is one of the most popular tourist destinations in Washington, D.C.

Architectural Features and Design

The lincoln bedroom in the white house

The Lincoln Bedroom is a magnificent room with a rich architectural history. Its design reflects the grandeur and significance of the White House and its occupants.

The room’s architectural style is a blend of Federal and Greek Revival, with high ceilings, large windows, and intricate moldings. The walls are adorned with silk damask wallpaper, and the floor is covered in a rich Persian carpet. The room is furnished with antique furniture, including a bed that once belonged to Abraham Lincoln.


  • The bed is a mahogany four-poster bed that was made in the 1840s. It is believed to have been used by Abraham Lincoln during his presidency.
  • The dresser is a mahogany piece that was made in the 1850s. It is decorated with intricate carvings and brass hardware.
  • The chairs are a set of six mahogany chairs that were made in the 1860s. They are upholstered in red velvet and have carved backs.
  • The table is a mahogany table that was made in the 1870s. It is a large, rectangular table with a carved base.


  • The wallpaper is a silk damask wallpaper that was made in the 1840s. It is a rich red color and has a floral pattern.
  • The carpet is a Persian carpet that was made in the 1850s. It is a large, rectangular carpet with a intricate design.
  • The curtains are a set of red velvet curtains that were made in the 1860s. They are hung from a brass rod and have a tassel trim.


  • The portrait of Abraham Lincoln is a painting by George Healy that was made in 1860. It is a life-size portrait of Lincoln and shows him in a black suit and tie.
  • The painting of the Battle of Gettysburg is a painting by Edwin Forbes that was made in 1876. It is a large, panoramic painting that depicts the battle of Gettysburg.
  • The statue of Abraham Lincoln is a bronze statue by Augustus Saint-Gaudens that was made in 1887. It is a life-size statue of Lincoln and shows him in a seated position.
Dimensions, Layout, and Key Features
Length35 feet
Width22 feet
Height12 feet
Number of windows6
Number of doors2
Key featuresAbraham Lincoln’s bed, portrait of Abraham Lincoln, painting of the Battle of Gettysburg, statue of Abraham Lincoln

Presidential Use of the Lincoln Bedroom

House lincoln bedroom room historical

The Lincoln Bedroom has been used by numerous presidents throughout history for both official functions and private retreats. It has witnessed many significant moments in American history, from meetings with foreign dignitaries to intimate family gatherings.

One of the most famous occupants of the Lincoln Bedroom was Abraham Lincoln himself. Lincoln used the room as his personal office and sleeping quarters during the Civil War. It was here that he met with generals, signed important documents, and made some of the most consequential decisions of his presidency.

Protocol and Traditions

The Lincoln Bedroom is reserved for the exclusive use of the President and their guests. It is not open to the public, and only a select few are ever granted the privilege of staying in the room.

When the President is not in residence, the Lincoln Bedroom is used for official functions, such as state dinners, receptions, and meetings with foreign leaders. It is also a popular spot for presidential photo ops.

Notable Guests

The Lincoln Bedroom has hosted a wide range of notable guests over the years, including:

  • Winston Churchill
  • Charles de Gaulle
  • Nelson Mandela
  • Queen Elizabeth II
  • Barack Obama

These are just a few of the many famous people who have had the honor of staying in the Lincoln Bedroom. The room is a testament to the enduring legacy of Abraham Lincoln and the important role it has played in American history.

Cultural and Historical Significance

The Lincoln Bedroom stands as a hallowed chamber within the White House, its walls whispering tales of momentous events that have shaped American history. It serves as a symbol of the nation’s reverence for its iconic leader, Abraham Lincoln, and embodies the core values upon which the country was founded.

The room’s symbolic significance is profound. It represents the enduring legacy of Lincoln, a man who guided the nation through its darkest hours and preserved the Union. His presence, immortalized through portraits and artifacts, inspires a sense of unity and resilience in those who enter its hallowed space.

Connections to Major Historical Events and Figures

The Lincoln Bedroom has witnessed countless pivotal moments in American history. It was here that President Lincoln signed the Emancipation Proclamation, forever altering the course of the nation. The room has also hosted a succession of presidents, including Theodore Roosevelt, Woodrow Wilson, and Franklin D.

Roosevelt, each leaving their own imprint on the nation’s history.

  • Emancipation Proclamation:Signed by Lincoln on January 1, 1863, this document declared all slaves in Confederate-held territory to be free, marking a turning point in the Civil War.
  • Roosevelt’s Conservation Legacy:President Theodore Roosevelt utilized the Lincoln Bedroom as his private study, where he drafted speeches and policies that shaped the nation’s conservation movement.
  • Wilson’s Fourteen Points:President Woodrow Wilson crafted his famous Fourteen Points, outlining his vision for a post-World War I world, within the confines of the Lincoln Bedroom.
  • FDR’s Fireside Chats:President Franklin D. Roosevelt delivered several of his iconic fireside chats from the Lincoln Bedroom, addressing the nation during the Great Depression and World War II.

Restoration and Preservation

The lincoln bedroom in the white house

The Lincoln Bedroom has undergone several restoration and preservation projects throughout its history to maintain its historical integrity and preserve its significance as a national landmark. These efforts have involved meticulous attention to detail, employing specialized techniques, and collaborating with experts in various fields.

One of the most significant restoration projects was undertaken in the 1970s, led by the Committee for the Preservation of the White House. This project aimed to restore the room to its original appearance during Lincoln’s time, based on historical records and photographs.

The project involved removing layers of paint and wallpaper, restoring the original plasterwork, and replacing the carpet with a reproduction of the original design.

Challenges and Techniques, The lincoln bedroom in the white house

Restoring and preserving the Lincoln Bedroom presents several challenges, including:

  • Maintaining the room’s historical accuracy while incorporating modern safety and accessibility features.
  • Preserving the original materials and finishes while addressing wear and tear caused by time and use.
  • Balancing the need for public access with the preservation of the room’s delicate furnishings and artifacts.

To address these challenges, restoration teams employ a range of techniques, such as:

  • Using specialized cleaning methods to remove dirt and grime without damaging the original surfaces.
  • Employing conservation techniques to repair and stabilize damaged materials, such as plasterwork and textiles.
  • Collaborating with historians and experts to ensure the accuracy of restoration work.

Timeline of Major Restoration Projects

Major restoration projects undertaken on the Lincoln Bedroom include:

  • 1902:Renovation and redecoration under President Theodore Roosevelt.
  • 1952:Redecoration and installation of new furnishings under President Harry S. Truman.
  • 1970s:Major restoration project to restore the room to its original appearance under President Richard Nixon.
  • 1990s:Installation of a new carpet and window treatments under President Bill Clinton.
  • 2010:Conservation and repair work on the plasterwork and ceiling under President Barack Obama.

These restoration projects have played a vital role in preserving the Lincoln Bedroom as a living testament to the legacy of President Abraham Lincoln and a symbol of American history.

Public Access and Tours: The Lincoln Bedroom In The White House

The Lincoln Bedroom is one of the most iconic rooms in the White House, and it is open to the public for tours.

Tours of the White House are free of charge, but they must be booked in advance through your Member of Congress. Tours are available on weekdays and are typically 2 hours long. Visitors will see the Lincoln Bedroom, as well as other public rooms in the White House, such as the East Room, the Blue Room, and the Oval Office.

Visitor Restrictions

There are some restrictions on visiting the Lincoln Bedroom. Visitors are not allowed to take photographs or videos in the room, and they must stay on the designated tour route. Visitors are also not allowed to touch any of the furniture or artifacts in the room.