Posted by: Dahni | July 27, 2016

The House that Freedom Built

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By Dahni
© 2016, all rights reserved

Dear Michele,

You Do NOT live in a house that was built entirely by slaves! Some were free and some were slaves of subcontractors. But not all were slaves. You basically only live in a house on the location of a house that was built by some slaves, but not all! So what, the entire country could be said, was built by many slaves, at least much of the original thirteen colonies which became the first 13 of the now fifty states. Slavery was outlawed in the USA, way over a hundred years ago! Yes, some slaves were used in the original construction. Yes, this was part of Our history. Slavery was always wrong. It is no longer an issue here. Most of US understand this. Why do you have to keep bringing it up?


Artist’s picture of the original White House

But technically, the government of the United States did not hire slaves, sub-contractors did.

The original house was burnt by the British in 1814 and was stopped just short of totally burning to the ground, by the winds of a tornado that ripped through the nation’s capitol. The white house was then re-constructed.


The White House burning by the British in 1814

In 1949, The White House was deemed “unlivable.” Then president Truman, lived elsewhere while reconstruction began until, it was completed in 1952. To accomplish this, the entire interior of The White House was ‘gutted’ and built brand new at a cost of around $6,000,000.00. By the way, it would probably cost around 10X that today or about $60,000,000.00.

Concrete and steel replaced the wooden beams. Very little of the original contents could be used and most were hauled off to the dump. Fearing that people scavenging through the landfills would sell this stuff, for ridiculously high prices, the government sold kits of this material, to anyone in the public. Starting at around 25 cents, this stuff was sold until the program ended, only making around $10,000.00.

The White House totally gutted and re-built 1949-1952

The White House totally gutted and re-built 1949-1952

After Truman returned to The White House, many complained that there was not enough period-accurate interior furnishings, drapery and other accouterments. He asked congress for more money to make it period-accurate and the request was denied.

Most every single president before 1949 and after, have made personal additions such as new paint and carpeting etc. but it was Jacqueline Kennedy, wife of president John F. Kennedy that oversaw the remodeling of the interior, and the outside grounds, making it more historically accurate and beautiful for families that live here and those visiting. Either similar materials by the original designers were purchased and installed or exact-reproductions were used, for this project.


Two decades later in 1981, First Lady Nancy Reagan, took on another million dollar remodel, mostly with private donations. The White House was restored to much of its former glory, to become even more historically accurate and with many needed repairs being accomplished.

First Lady Nancy Reagan oversaw another remodel of the White House around 1981

First Lady Nancy Reagan oversaw another remodel of the White House around 1981

It has been reported that many things from The White House have been stolen or have just disappeared, which happens to coincide with the changing of the administrations over the years. Now I don’t want to mention any names, but I have read a former occupant, currently running for president, was required to return much of what was found to be missing, after leaving the residence. I am sure, was not intentional  🙂

Michele, even you made changes to The White House including, a dining room table for over $590,000.00 plus other expenditures, paid for by the taxpayers. So, Michele, the house, The White House that you and your husband and your two girls live in, virtually nothing original that was originally built by some slaves (not all were slaves), exists!

The outside walls needed to be re-supported from both the interior and the exterior, so there is virtually nothing left that was original within the house where you and your family live. Only your reminding the nation that elected your husband (twice) of not its history or its unity of purpose, but its divisiveness persists! You and your entire family are provided for richly and are given greater protection, paid for by the taxpayers of the United States of America, than perhaps any other person or persons in the entire world. It is reported that your lavish vacations and other benefits have been paid for, by the good people of the United States, at a cost of many millions of dollars, these past 7+ years. You live in a mansion, that is air-conditioned, has over a hundred rooms and more than 30+ bathrooms, none of which were built by or provided for, by slaves. The original white house did not have inside plumbing or bathrooms. You have at least one swimming pool, a tennis court, a bowling ally, a private theater and every advance and advancement currently available, for your personal enjoyment and protection.

I could say that I am sorry that your stay there these past 7+ years have been so depressive and so oppressive to you, but I won’t and I don’t, feel sorry for you! What would you have preferred that in 1949, it was just completely torn down, hauled off and an entirely new house built? That was an option, but The White House Preservation Committee, decided to preserve as much of the original as possible, partial-slave labor included.

Soon, you will be moving and then I suppose, if you so choose, you can spend the rest of your life (also paid for by the taxpayers), regretting and recounting how horrible an experience it was for you, to have had to endure, living there. I still won’t feel sorry for you! But right now, you live within the well manicured acres of gardens and landscaping and a beautiful fully-equipped mansion that could meet your every need and desire, at your beck and call, with servants attending to you. Most of WE the People, would love to be even a bird or a squirrel that lives where you do! You may live inside of a house that some of the outside facade may still exist that was built by some slaves (but not entirely). And even some stuff on the inside might have built by some slaves, but not all were slaves. But you do NOT live in a house built by slaves! You live in the house built by Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness, in the land of the FREE and the Home of the BRAVE!

“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men” [women and children] “are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.”

Excerpt from: The Declaration of Independence,
July 4th, 1776

If you wouldn’t keep separating US by distinctions, labels and our differences, maybe WE the People might get unified and move together, by what WE all have in common? It is after all, ‘The People’s House!’

So Michele, IF you really want to be historically accurate, you live in a house that Freedom built!


Just I-Magine,



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