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Decatur House, Washington DC
(4.3/5 based on 20 reviews on the web)
Decatur House is a historic home in Washington, D.C., named after its first owner and occupant Stephen Decatur. The house (built, 1818) is located northwest of Lafayette Square, at the southwest corner of Jackson Place and H Street, near the White House. A museum, it now serves as the National Center for White House History, of the White House Historical Association.HistoryDecatur House is one of the oldest surviving homes in Washington, D.C., and one of only three remaining houses in the country designed by neoclassical architect Benjamin Henry Latrobe. Completed in 1818 for naval hero Stephen Decatur and his wife, Susan, the Federal Style house is prominently located across Lafayette Square from the White House. It was successively home to Henry Clay, Martin Van Buren, Edward Livingston, who collectively made Decatur House the unofficial residence of the Secretary of State from 1827 to 1833, each renting the house while they served in that post.In 1836 John Gadsby and his wife Providence moved into the house and brought their house slaves. They built a two-story structure at the back which became the slave quarters for those workers, who previously lived in the main house. This structure remains as one of the few examples of slave quarters in urban areas. It is physical evidence of African Americans' having been held "in bondage in sight of the White House."
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TripAdvisor
  • This is a small museum located near the White House. There is no admissions chsrge. The first floor can be completely viewed in less than a half an hour. The museum provides an overview of the White H...  more »
  • Spend about a half of a week here for a conference. We had the opportunity to tour the house and it was well worth it! This is the home of the White House Historical Assoc., but they have restored the...  more »
  • One interesting exhibit is a book with the signatures of every president with the exception of President Franklin Roosevelt's that was signed by Eleanor, his wife. A group of us were invited yo a dinn...  more »