Earliest Photograph of the White House

This is an amazing old photograph of the White House taken by John Plumbe, Jr. in 1846. The 11th President of the United States , James K. Polk, was the building’s occupant, having succeeded President John Tyler just the year prior. It’s a great one to stare at and study. It appears to be taken some time during the winter, as all the leaves are off the trees. You will also notice that the current top floor of the White House and the Truman Balcony are not there.

White House daguerreotype by John Plumbe, Jr. in 1846 (Library of Congress)
White House daguerreotype by John Plumbe, Jr. in 1846 (Library of Congress)

About Tom

Tom founded Ghosts of DC on January 4th, 2012 as a blog to uncover the lost and untold history of Washington, D.C. He has lived in the city for over a decade and loves exploring every corner of the District.

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