Eugene Allen and First Lady Nancy Reagan

White House butler and maître d’ Eugene Allen served eight US presidents. In 1986, he told First Lady Nancy Reagan that it was time he retired. In response, she invited him to a state dinner held for German Chancellor Helmut Kohl. Allen was  probably the only butler ever afforded such an honor.

Read more: White House Workers: Traditions and Memories features “The Butler” Eugene Allen

In conversation with James Deutsch and Charles Weber
Edited by Alexander Jusdanis
Smithsonian Center for Folklife and Cultural Heritage