History: Action Central

For 200 years the White House has weathered everything from fire to sheep--and some big egos

The White House will celebrate its 200th birthday on Nov. 1, and right now the White House Historical Association is searching for someone rotund enough to play the role of President John Adams, the first President to take up residence there. All he has to do is climb into an antique carriage on Pennsylvania Avenue around 1 p.m. that day and make his way to the White House to commemorate the fateful first entry, which at the time was barely noted. The original Adams had some doubts about the place even before he left Philadelphia; the mansion was too big and...

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