With the arrival of the Johnson family, Mrs. Johnson put her own signature on the look and use of the second-floor apartments. In her mainly green-and yellow-bedroom she set up a cozy working space, in which she dictated letters and speeches, and planned and directed her many activities. Down the hall--in rooms that had lately known the toys of the Kennedy children--the Johnson's teenage girls, Luci and Lynda, had their bedrooms until marriage took them both to homes of their own. And when President Nixon brought his family to the White House in 1969, his daughter Tricia moved into the suite that had been Lynda and Luci's. The following year, Tricia took television viewers on the first public showing of many of the rooms in the family quarters.
After the Carters moved in, ten-year-old Amy occupied the bedroom that had been Caroline Kennedy's, then Luci Johnson's, then Tricia Nixon's. Her tree house in the gnarled old cedar on the south lawn, her delight in reading, her violin lessons, pets, and school friends became part of the continuing White House small-fry chronicles that began with Susanna, granddaughter of John and Abigail Adams.
President and Mrs. Reagan put their stamp on the second-floor family quarters, as well as on the expanded living space that was added to the third floor during the Truman reconstruction of 1948-52. Most of this floor was then divided into bedroom, bath, and sitting room apartments, which are available today for family members and personal guests. The remaining area serves as space for storage and housekeeping, with one room reserved for recreation. Mrs. Reagan's work on these floors completed the refurbishing project begun by Mrs. Kennedy in 1961.
The Reagan redecoration focused chiefly on the second and third floors.
But one elegant wanderer purchased by Monroe in 1817-a French
sofa-was returned to the Blue
Room on the state floor. Sold at an
auction just before the Civil War, this gilded sofa, curved to fit the
room, came home in 1978, only to be stored again. Finally reclaimed and
re-covered with blue silk, it joined seven of the original matching chairs.