edited by Mary Alice Mairose and Mary Alice Mairose
photographs by Ian Adams
illustrated by Dianne McElwain
afterword by Hope Taft
foreword by Frances Strickland
Ohio University Press, 2008
Cloth: 978-0-8214-1790-4 | eISBN: 978-0-8214-4255-5 | Paper: 978-0-8214-1791-1
Library of Congress Classification F499.C78O45 2008
Dewey Decimal Classification 977.157


This richly illustrated volume tells the story of thehome that has served as Ohio’s executive residence since 1957, and of the nine governors and their families who have lived in the house. Our First Family’s Home offers the first complete history of the residence and garden that represent Ohio to visiting dignitaries and the citizens of the state alike. Once in a state of decline, the house has been lovingly restored and improved by itsresidents. Development of the Ohio Heritage Garden has increased the educational potential of the house and has sparked an interest in the preservation of native plant species. Looking toward the future, the Residence is also taking the lead in promoting environmental issues such as solar powerand green energy.

Photographs by award-winning environmental photographer Ian Adams and botanical art by Dianne McElwain showcase the beauty of the home’s architecture and the myriad of native plants that grace the three acres on which the Residence stands. Dianne McElwain is a member of the American Society of Botanical Artists in New York. Her botanical paintings have won numerous awards and are found in prestigious collections throughout the United States.

Essays highlight the Jacobethan Revival architecture and the history of the home. The remaining pieces cover the garden and include an intimate tour of the Heritage Garden, which was inspired by Ohio’s diverse landscape. Finally, former Governor Ted Strickland and First Lady Frances Strickland discuss the increasing focus on green energy at the Governor’s Residence and First Lady Emerita Hope Taft explains how native plants can help sustain the environment.

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