The home of the American president has been a consistent symbol since it was built, maintaining its classically inspired architecture through the War of 1812 fire, massive renovations under Harry S. Truman, and other alterations. A Welsh immigrant named John Plumbe Jr., who was one of the country’s first prominent professional photographers, took the daguerreotype in January 1846. The White House photograph isn’t Plumbe’s only image of the nation’s capital in 1846. That year he systematically journeyed around the city, capturing its official buildings with the new photographic technique.

Source: The First Known Photograph of the White House