The White House, as it appeared in either the 1880s or 1890s. Image courtesy of the Library of Congress, Detroit Publishing Company Collection.
The same view in 2012:
The White House doesn’t look all that different from what it looked like in the late 19th century, and yet almost everything about it has changed. The East Wing and West Wing, which aren’t visible in the 2012 photo, didn’t exist at the time of the first photo, nor did the third floor on the roof, or the second floor balcony behind the pillars. But, the most dramatic changes in the past 120 or so years came in the late 1940’s, when the badly-deteriorated wood frame was in danger of collapse. The entire interior was gutted, the wood frame was replaced with steel, and the interior put back into place afterward (see this photo of bulldozers and dump trucks at work inside the White House). The exterior, however, remains much the same as it did after the reconstruction following its burning during the War of 1812.