"If we are to have another contest in the near future of our national existence, I predict the dividing line will not be Mason and Dixon’s, but between patriotism and intelligence on one side and superstition, ambition and ignorance on the other." -President Ulysses S. Grant
Flowers for the First Family: The History of the White House Rose Garden
“Good evening and welcome to the White House on this special occasion. I want to start by thanking the talented people who made the renewal of the White House Rose Garden possible. Many of you are with us tonight. The President and I are grateful for your time and effort – your hard work, dedication, and generosity are reflected in this beautiful garden.
Teamwork among the landscape architects, contractors, consultants, Park Service, Secret Service and White House personnel was key to successfully accomplishing this work. I would also like to thank those whose generous contributions made this work possible. I deeply appreciate your support for America’s garden, my family, and the White House.
The Rose Garden layout we have all come to know and treasure was designed during the Kennedy Administration by Bunny Mellon. For 60 years, this space has served as the backdrop for many important events. The garden has also served as a peaceful outdoor escape for many administrations and their guests.
The changes you see tonight are the result of a thoughtful and collaborative process carefully crafted with the help of scholars and experts in architecture, horticulture, design, and historic preservation.
This renewal included improvements to the infrastructure and utilities, allowing this beautiful garden to more readily meet the needs of a busy White House. These improvements also make the garden fully accessible to all Americans, including those with disabilities.
I am grateful for the commitment and strength of our team, allowing us to complete this project with such an ambitious schedule. This amazing achievement is a lasting legacy, not only for the People’s House, but for all those involved in its successful realization.
Gardens are symbols of growth and hope. We celebrate this garden in the hope that future generations will not only enjoy – but also draw inspiration and strength – from this space where so much of our history has been shared.
Thank you all for your dedication and contributions to this incredible project.
Please enjoy your time this evening alongside your friends and colleagues. Thank you, may God Bless you, and may God Bless the United States of America.” -Melania Trump
-Excerpt courtesy of the White House, Statements & Releases, “Readout from the Reopening of the White House Rose Garden,” August 22, 2020