Posts Tagged ‘Presidents’

TGIF Readers! I feel like this is Friday #2 this week, with the holiday on Wednesday. Speaking of the 4th of July, since I am still coming down from my post-fireworks euphoria, I have decided to theme today’s Fantasy in honor of our recently passed holiday. As you may know (or may not, as I do have some foreign readers), Independence Day (often better-known as the 4th of July, for the date the holiday falls on) is an American Holiday in which the citizenry celebrates the signing of the Declaration of Independence, by which the Founding Fathers of our nation stated that America was its own country and should be free of British rule. This act of treason led to war between Britain and the American colonies, which eventually led to the creation of the country we know today… and it all began on July 4, 1776 (granted, that’s the thumbnail sketch of the founding of the United States, as there were many acts of rebellion that led up to the signing of the Declaration of Independence and the Revolutionary War, not to mention some confusion among when the Declaration was actually signed, but to avoid writing a book that’s been written several times over, I’ll leave us with the understanding that the holiday is on July 4th and we’re celebrating America).

Today, the 4th of July represents patriotism and love of country, both of which I can wholeheartedly support.  In honor of those sentiments, today’s Fantasy is tied to one of America’s most beloved Presidents: Abraham Lincoln. Abraham Lincoln was America’s 16th President, responsible for leading the Union through the Civil War, writing the Gettysburg Address and the Emancipation Proclamation, and he was also assassinated.  What many people don’t know about President Lincoln is that, although he loved the White House, he actually dearly loved another house in Washington, DC, more. This other  house was a seasonal retreat for Presidents.  It was (and still is) a cottage on the grounds of what was known as the Soldiers Home (Now known as the armed forces retirement home).

(Historic American Buildings Survey (HABS) Photo, by way of wikipedia)

The Cottage was built in 1842 for George Washington Riggs (who later went on to found Riggs National Bank… Yeah, I’ve never heard of that bank either, but the guy had enough money to found a bank, so there you go….) in the fashionable Gothic Revival style. However, it did not remain a private home for very long, as President Lincoln had taken up residence there by the summer of 1862. It is even said he wrote preliminary drafts of the Emancipation Proclamation in the cottage. (Photo from lincolncottage.org and Armed Forces Retirement Home)

The cottage underwent a major restoration beginning in 2005, and opened to the public for the first time in 2008.  The site was declared a National Monument by President Clinton in 2000, as well as a being included in the National Register of Historic Places as a National Historic Landmark.   Today is is maintained and run by the National Trust for Historic Preservation. (Photo from National Geographic)

Hope you enjoyed this look at President Lincoln’s Cottage. If you are in Washington, D.C., you should check it out. If you won’t be in the D.C. area anytime soon, you can visit the Cottage Website here.

Have a great weekend!



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Good Day all and happy 4th of July weekend! Since it seems to be all the rage to theme your blog posts to holidays and I’m (accidentally) patriotically dressed in my finest blue jeans and red shirt, I figured this week I’d bring you a special jam-packed edition of Friday fantasies celebrating America and Old Glory with daydream-worthy Red, White and Blue Fantasy Homes. I do literally mean they will be Red, White and Blue.

First up we will appropriately start off  with the  the lovely and beautifully designed RED brick Monticello, home to the Third President of the United States and author of the Declaration of Independence, Thomas Jefferson. Oh, and a little side note. Monticello was one of the places that Ash and I visited on our Honeymoon so I’m very fond of Monticello.

I highly recommend visiting Monticello! While you’re in Virginia, you’ll have easy access to several other Presidential homes in the area. Additionally, right down the road from Monticello is an historic tavern called the Michie Tavern (pronounced Mickey… like the mouse) where you can get a really tasty southern buffet lunch and take their neat audio tour. For more information on Monticello (The only built site in American on the World Heritage list) and to get information on visiting (they have the best visitors’ center I have ever seen!) check out their website here.

Next up is White, and since we are celebrating America’s awesome-ness, let’s make the very obvious choice of using the White House… After all, every little kid in America is told they could grow-up to become President and with that gig comes a pretty sweet pad.  Who hasn’t fantasized about having a roller racer race down that halls of the White House? (Just me, huh?)   Construction of the White House was started in 1792, and John Adams, the Second President, was the first to live there. It survived a fire in 1814 when the British stormed Washington during the War of 1812, and a second fire in 1929.

And last, but certainly not least, we have Blue. Now for blue I chose to go with some thing less presidential but still equally American… opulence. No I’m not talking about petite lap giraffes or classic car collections but I am talking about what I consider to be the Grand-Daddy of all of Newport Mansions (though it is much smaller than most), which is among the oldest surviving homes in Newport: the Thomas Townsend House.

I know this house doesn’t seem very opulent when you compare it to some others in Newport. It is, after all, far less pretentious then it’s other Newportian (it’s a word now, cuz I said so) counter-parts, but this house was fairly large for its time and it was built to stand the tests of time (and it has).
While it wasn’t built for the prominent cabinet making Townsend family it was sold to them early on and remained in the family for quite some time.While navigating the narrow old streets of Newport you might easily pass right by the Townsend house but for its presence. You can feel its sense of history when you walk by and will inevitably stop to take-in this remarkable House.
Well that’s it for today’s Red, White and Blue Friday Fantasies. Happy grilling, everyone, and enjoy the fireworks! As a nice little bonus I’ll leave you with these links to some tasty 4th of July eats.To cool off on a hot day try these Patriotic Pops. To add a bit of pep to your celebration why not make these Firework Truffles and throw together this tasty 4th of July Trifle to bring to a pot-luck

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