Game Room

Game Room in 1992, looking northeast (HABS)


Game Room lavatory

Eight Ball, Corner Pocket, Mr. President

The third floor is also home to the game room, where a pool table resides at least since the George HW Bush era. Today's Map Room was once home to a White House pool table; and even as early as John Quincy Adams, a pool table has inhabited today's Vermeil Room or some other corner of the mansion from time to time. The Nixon White House had a pool table, although it's not clear which room it was in.

At least through the Kennedy era, this room was a bedroom. The Game Room has its own lavatory.

According to Brunswick:

Abraham Lincoln. Lincoln was a self-confessed “billiards addict.” He described the game as a “health inspiring, scientific game, lending recreation to the otherwise fatigued mind.” It is quite possible that critical issues of national interest—slavery, international relations and the civil war—were handled over the slate of a Brunswick table.

Teddy Roosevelt—our Secretary of the Navy and the hero of San Juan Hill, the President of the United States and, later, a distinguished wild game hunter—owned a Brunswick table.

There was a Brunswick table in the White House during the administrations of several recent presidents. And when President Eisenhower established Camp David, it was furnished with not one, but four Brunswick tables. Every President since Eisenhower—Kennedy, Nixon, Carter, Clinton—has used those tables. A stream of notable visitors, including Winston Churchill, Nikita Krushchev, Charles de Gaulle, Anwar Sadat and King Hussein, all knew those tables. Margaret Thatcher and Ronald Reagan were known to be pretty good players.

More Images

Game Room in 1992, looking southwest (HABS)

Game Room around 1985, looking northeast (Reagan Library)

The room in 1952, looking southeast (Truman Library)