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President's Room Table: A Civil Rights Landmark?

President's Room, U.S. Capitol

President's Room, U.S. Capitol

The President's Room is part of the U.S. Capitol extension completed in 1859. Today, it is used primarily for meetings by senators. In recent years, presidents of the United States have used the room as part of their inauguration day activities.


The Rumor

First Reading of the Emancipation Proclamation...

People often say that Abraham Lincoln signed the Emancipation Proclamation on the President's Room table.

The Truth!

Abraham Lincoln signed the Emancipation Proclamation without ceremony in his private study at the White House on January 1, 1863, some 20 years before the President's Room table was made.

How Do We Know the Truth?


Myths: Origins of the Myth
At a ceremony in the President's Room on August 6, 1965 President Johnson signed the Voting Rights Act of 1965. However, Johnson did not use the current President's Room table for the signing.

President's Room
Learn more about President's Room