President Obama with Savannah Guthrie for the Super Bowl 49 pre-game show (White House – Pete Souza)
From Simple Cooks to Gourmet Chefs
In the early life of the White House, the African American staff and other servants who lived at the President’s House most often had rooms in the basement. Open at ground level on the south, the basement (referred to as the ground floor today) has windows on the north facing a deep areaway that is below grade. The kitchen and pantry together are about 22 feet by 27 1/2 feet.
The ground floor’s vaulted Central Hall once accessed a great kitchen 40 feet long with large fireplaces at each end, a family kitchen, an oval servants hall, the steward’s quarters, storage and work rooms, and the servants’ bedrooms.
An inventory for the year 1826, during John Quincy Adams’ administration, records the typical furniture used by servants in