White House Corridor: Gifts from Heads of State

View items that illustrate the style and atmosphere of the Kennedy White House.

Launch of the Mercury MR-3 Space Capsule Freedom 7

Lift-off! The U.S. Space Program

In 1961 responding to the Soviet Union’s lead in the exploration of space, President Kennedy challenged the United States to keep up in the "Space Race" and not fall behind the Soviets.  He said: “We have a long way to go in the space race. We started late. But this is the new ocean, and I believe the United States must sail on it and be in a position second to none”.  Kennedy set the goal of landing an American on the Moon before the end of the decade and initiated the programs to make it possible.

Carolina Rocking Chair

The Oval Office

In an exhibit filled with President Kennedy’s furnishings from the Oval Office, watch him delivering his historic report to the nation on civil rights, in which he defined racial discrimination as a “moral issue” for the country.

Watercolor Painting of the White House Treaty Room

First Lady Jacqueline Bouvier Kennedy

This exhibit highlights Jacqueline Kennedy’s early life, as well as her substantive achievements as First Lady. Her contributions to the field of historic preservation, her advocacy for the arts, and her innovations in White House entertaining are illustrated in this exhibit, which includes an interactive screen focusing on Mrs. Kennedy's work as First Lady, highlighting other items from the collection not currently on display.

KFC 460P

The Kennedy Family

Artifacts, photographs, and “home movies” shot by White House photographers portray the family life of President Kennedy.