Did you know that before former First Lady Jacqueline Kennedy lived in the White House, the first families took their furnishings with them after their terms were over?
Mrs. Kennedy thought better of that practice, and believed it was important for the “People’s House” to preserve American history and showcase the best of American culture. In 1961, she was instrumental in the founding of The White House Historical Association — a private, nonprofit organization with a big mission — to enhance the public’s understanding, appreciation, and enjoyment of the White House.
Working with the National Park Service, the curator of the White House, the White House chief usher, and the “first family” — the WHHA is responsible for the care, conservation, and interpretation of the historic staterooms of the White House Executive Residence and larger White House Complex.
We are thrilled to interview historian William Bushong, the chief White House historian and VP of the WHHA since 1997. Scroll down for our Q&A. — David Bruce Smith, founder of the Grateful American™ Foundation, and Hope Katz Gibbs, executive producer