The governor's residence is a house

Letter to the editor

Posted: Sunday, June 26, 2005

Thank you for the article about the first ladies, and thank you to Nancy Murkowski for her efforts to raise funds to help maintain Alaska's Governor's House.

The ladies are right; the official name of the building is the Governor's House, named so by Gov. Eli Clark in 1912. He particularly chose that name, being influenced by Teddy Roosevelt who officially named, what had been known as the Executive Mansion, the White House.

As I recall, the deliberate choice of the word "house" over "mansion" was made to show clearly that this is the official residence of and for the people of Alaska, not an exclusive out-of-reach residence of an out-of-touch executive.

Locally, folks do seem to call it "the mansion," but truly it is a lovely home where we Alaskans extend our hospitality to everyone from the likes of former presidents to young children just learning about our government. It's a gracious and warm building full of history, charm and character, just like all Alaskans. I think it's real name fits it best.

Nancy DeCherney


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