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White House Replica - Berks County PA

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Historical Review of Berks County

Volume XLIX, Number 3   Summer 1984 


The White House Replica


White House Replica

The Historical Society of Berks County is proud to announce it has contracted with John Zweifel to bring his "White House Replica" to the Fairground Square, Route 222, North, from June 16th through June 24th.

Harold E. Yoder Jr., executive director of the Society, announced that the mall is allowing the massive miniature exhibit to be placed in an unoccupied storeroom for the nine-day period. Admission will be $2.50 per adult and $1.00 per student.

The exhibit represents a 16-year dream of Mr. Zweifel. He wanted to create an authentic replica of the White House as a gift to his country.

It was on Dec. 18, 1975, that his dream was realized when he unveiled the hand-carved White House Replica for President and Mrs. Gerald Ford at a "Pageant of Peace" held in Washington, D.C.

Years — totally 16 — of painstaking research, compiled and documented, preceded the more than 200,000 man-hours needed to build this rare model which is destined to become a national treasure of art. Extending 60 feet from its West to East Wing, every detail of the stately mansion is faithfully recreated on a 1-inch to 1-foot scale.

More than 10 million people have seen the miniature replica that has been on international tour since 1976. This is its first appearance in southeastern Pennsylvania.

Mr. Zweifel, a history buff, wood carver and artist, studied architecture and sculpture at the Art Institute of Chicago. His wife, Jan, is an interior designer. She was responsible for coordinating all the model's appointments of design.

The couple did 90-per cent of the work involved in the creation of the model. A total of 150 hours were required just to reproduce, in miniature, the intricate rosewood table from the Lincoln Bedroom.

The Fairgrounds Square is open Monday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 9:30 p.m. and Sundays from noon to five.

Other historic exhibits and memorabilia have been coordinated by both the Fairgrounds Square and the Society to accompany the White House Replica.

Members of the Historical Society of Berks County can be admitted to the exhibit, free of charge, by showing their membership card weekdays, Monday through Friday, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.


John Zweifel and his magnificent White House replica, in miniature, will be in Berks County at the Fairgrounds Square Mall from June 16th through June 24th as a project of the Historical Society of Berks County. The 20 by 60 foot "doll house" version of our nation's first residence will have no other exhibit site in Southeastern Pennsylvania.


Look for the White House Replica truck when it arrives in Reading for exhibit at the Fairgrounds Square Mall. A special preview party for Society members is planned Friday evening from 7:30 to 9:30 o'clock, June 16th.



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