Part III of Our White House, “Annexation and Division,” focuses almost exclusively on our sixteenth president, Abraham Lincoln, and his family. This section of the book opens with a poignant illustration of Union soldiers encamped in the White House (pictured at left), followed by an excerpt of Charles Dickens’ own impressions of the White House in the mid-nineteenth century. Also included is the story of former slave Elizabeth Keckly and her work as First Lady Mary Todd Lincoln’s seamstress, as well as tales of the young Lincoln boys, poetry mourning the Lincoln family’s tragic losses, and a first-hand account of the Civil War in our nation’s capital.

If you do not have a copy of Our White House in your classroom or home, please consider checking out a copy from your local library or purchasing one online here.

To print the Education Resource Guide that includes activities and discussion questions regarding the content included in Part III of Our White House, click here.

The table of contents for Part III of Our White House is listed below. To the right of each article or illustration title, in the “Read More” column, are links to relevant, supplemental content on this website to help you expand the educational potential of the book’s contents.

Table of ContentsRead More
Illustration by Timothy Basil Ering

From American Notes
by Charles Dickens
illustrated by Claire Nivola

On Looking into Dresses Worn by the "First Ladies" of the White House (Paper Doll Cut-outs), 1938
by Nancy Willard
illustrated with original book cover and paper dolls by Maybelle Mercer

Elizabeth Keckly:
Seamstress to First Lady Mary Todd Lincoln, 1861-1865

by Patricia C. and Fredrick L. McKissack
illustrated by Leo and Diane Dillon

High Spirits in the Lincoln White House
by Russell Freedman
Mary Todd Lincoln Speaks of Her Son’s Death, 1862
by Paul B. Janeczko
Memoir by Mary Henry:
Eyewitness to the Civil War in the City of Washington
Presidential Fact Files: Abraham Lincoln
In Early April
by Kate DiCamillo
illustrated by Chris Sheban