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Selection of previous Official White House Christmas Ornaments

When Jacqueline Kennedy established the White House Historical Association in 1961, she envisioned an organization that would educate and inspire Americans — and particularly children — to take part in our shared history. Twenty years later, the Association launched an initiative to celebrate that history by offering unique annual Christmas ornaments to the public. All sales of the ornaments benefit the Association’s mission of education and support for the historical preservation of White House art and artifacts.

Since their introduction, the ornaments have become a sought-after and beloved collector’s item for millions of families around the country, providing an opportunity for admirers of the history and the elegance of the White House to share the traditions and stories of holidays past with the next generation.

Each year’s ornament honors either an individual president — we are working our way from Washington to present day — or a significant White House anniversary. For example, in addition to the first 32 presidents, we’ve celebrated the bicentennial anniversaries of the American presidency (1789), the laying of the White House cornerstone (1792), and the year the White House first served as home to the president (1800).

Though the ornaments themselves are conceived by a new designer every year, they have been manufactured since the beginning of the program by ChemArt, a veteran-owned small business in Lincoln, Rhode Island. Other partners of the Association include the Washington Nationals, with whom the organization has a multi-year partnership to combine our passion for America’s pastime with education about the People’s House. This partnership involves a range of activities, from providing educational materials about White House history to local middle schools, to offering an in-park game where attendees are quizzed on White House history on the stadium’s big screen for the chance to win that year’s official ornament.

Thanks to these partners, and especially to the popularity of the ornaments, the Association has given over $45 million to assist in the preservation of the White House’s public and state rooms, and to maintain its permanent collection of artifacts. If you would like to learn more about past years’ ornaments, view the full gallery below. And if you would like to add to your collection, all previous years’ designs are available for purchase in our shop. To enjoy your own piece of history and support the Association’s work, buy your official 2018 White House Christmas ornament here.

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