*SOLD OUT* | All the Presidents’ Gardens

*SOLD OUT* | All the Presidents’ Gardens


At this time, this event is sold out and not accepting a wait list. In the event of cancellations, please check back to see if any openings are available.

On Thursday, October 24, 2019, Marta McDowell will join LancasterHistory to discuss how the White House grounds have grown with America. For event details and how to register, please scroll to the bottom of this page.

Book cover image of "All The Presidents' Gardens."The 18-acres surrounding the White House have been an unwitting witness to history—kings and queens have dined there, bills and treaties have been signed there, and presidents have landed and retreated many times over. Throughout it all, the grounds have remained not only beautiful, but also a powerful reflection of American trends.

Image of Marta McDowell.

Marta McDowell will share the untold history of the White House Grounds, starting with plant-obsessed George Washington and ending with Michelle Obama’s kitchen garden. History buffs will revel in the fascinating tidbits about Lincoln’s goats, Ike’s putting green, Jackie’s iconic roses, and Amy Carter’s tree house. Gardeners will enjoy the information on the plants whose favor has come and gone over the years and the gardeners who have been responsible for it all. And Lancastrians will delight in the information about First Lady Harriet Lane’s contributions to the White House gardens. During Buchanan’s presidency, Harriet had a new wooden greenhouse built on the roof of the west terrace, adjacent to the State Dining Room.

Marta McDowell teaches landscape history and horticulture at the New York Botanical Garden and consults for private clients and public gardens.  Her latest book is The World of Laura Ingalls Wilder: The Frontier Landscapes that Inspired the Little House Books. Timber Press also published All the Presidents’ Gardens, a New York Times bestseller, and Beatrix Potter’s Gardening Life, now in its sixth printing.  Marta is revising her first book, Emily Dickinson’s Gardens, due out in a full color edition by Timber Press in 2019.


A casual reception and book signing by the author will begin at 4pm on Thursday, October 24 at LancasterHistory, 230 N. President Ave., Lancaster. The main presentation will begin at 4:30pm in Ryder Hall.

The program is free and open to the public but requires advance registration to guarantee a seat at the presentation. Register online by clicking “Buy Tickets” below or by calling (717) 392-4633. Questions and accessibility requests may be directed to info@lancasterhistory.org or (717) 392-4633. Ticketholders should bring a paper printout of their tickets or be able to display their tickets on a cellphone or other internet-enabled device to check-in to the lecture.

Membership Makes History Happen! Your membership enables us to bring dynamic speakers to LancasterHistory for our lecture series throughout the year, and gives you other exciting benefits! Learn more about becoming a member of LancasterHistory or renewing your membership today.

Book Signing Lecture Reception

October 24, 2019 Ryder Hall at LancasterHistory, 230 N. President Avenue Reception & Book Signing 4pm | Presentation 4:30pm FREE | Registration Required To Guarantee Seat