White House Museum Law

Jackie's White House Museum Legislation

87th Congress, Session 1, 1961

Public Law 87-286, Sept. 22, 1961, 75 Stat. 586, provided: “That all of that portion of reservation numbered 1 in the city of Washington, District of Columbia, which is within the President's park enclosure, comprising eighteen and seven one-hundredths acres, shall continue to be known as the White House and shall be administered pursuant to the Act of August 25, 1916 (39 Stat. 535; 16 U.S.C. 1–3), and Acts supplementary thereto and amendatory thereof. In carrying out this Act primary attention shall be given to the preservation and interpretation of the museum character of the principal corridor on the ground floor and the principal public rooms on the first floor of the White House, but nothing done under this Act shall conflict with the administration of the Executive offices of the President or with the use and occupancy of the buildings and grounds as the home of the President and his family and for his official purposes.

Sec. 2. Articles of furniture, fixtures, and decorative objects of the White House, when declared by the President to be of historic or artistic interest, together with such similar articles, fixtures, and objects as are acquired by the White House in the future when similarly so declared, shall thereafter be considered to be inalienable and the property of the White House. Any such article, fixture, or object when not in use or on display in the White House shall be transferred by direction of the President as a loan to the Smithsonian Institution for its care, study, and storage or exhibition and such articles, fixtures, and objects shall be returned to the White House from the Smithsonian Institution on notice by the President.

Sec. 3. Nothing in this Act shall alter any privileges, powers, or duties vested in the White House Police and the United States Secret Service, Treasury Department, by section 202 of title 3, United States Code, and section 3056 of title 18, United States Code.

Approved September 22, 1961.

Image copyright Jake Gariepy (Dapper and Dreamy) - Pier table by Parisian cabinetmaker Pierre-Antoine Bellangé was found in a storage area in the White House. The restored table, part of a suite ordered by President James Monroe in 1817, was moved to the Blue Room by Jackie.

Copyright Steven L. Brawley, 2002-2015. All Rights Reserved.