Thursday, Aug. 18, 2011

George W. Bush's Prairie Chapel Ranch

Publicly known as the "Western White House" throughout George W. Bush's presidency, Prairie Chapel Ranch in Crawford, Texas, was the backdrop for many high-stakes meetings and press conferences — as well as Cindy Sheehan's highly publicized, month-long protest against the Iraq War. The giant property, which spans just less than 1,600 acres, was purchased by Bush in 1999, and immediately became a place for he and First Lady Laura Bush to escape the suited-up world of Washington politics, slap on some cowboy boots and reconnect with their Texan roots. By the end of his two-term presidency, Bush had visited the ranch 77 times, spending about 490 full or partial days there, according to CBS News. While Bush was known to bike, jog, fish and hunt during these visits, he also often brought his work home with him, inviting 17 foreign dignitaries to experience the American West.