Though just three miles from the White House, in Lincoln’s time his cottage was considered a retreat. Restored and now open for tours, President Lincoln’s Cottage served as the 16th president’s home away from home and often his office during his administration. Lincoln drafted the Emancipation Proclamation here and spent much of the Civil War here. Self-guided public tours are available as well as an in-depth tour exploring Lincoln’s role in emancipation.
Stop in for a drink at the Topaz Bar at the boutique Topaz Hotel, otherwise known as the “Little White House.” The converted building once served as Teddy Roosevelt’s house during his tenure as President William McKinley’s vice president and for a short time before he officially moved into the White House, giving it its apt nickname. When you belly up to the bar, ask the bartender for a Gin Rickey, which was invented right here in Washington, DC.