Presidents’ Day will soon be upon us, and is there a better way to celebrate than with a trip down memory lane? Yes there is — a trip down virtual reality lane. Thanks to a new partnership between Google Arts & Culture and no fewer than 30 cultural institutions, the internet giant is bringing you a huge update to the American Democracy collection. If you visit g.co/americandemocracy, you’ll be privy to a treasure trove of history about the United States presidency, complete with more than 2,000 new artifacts, photos, and pictures.
On Wednesday, Google announced the addition of 63 new exhibits to its American Democracy online exhibit, which brings the total number of exhibits to 158. As a whole, Google says, “… this collection invites you to remember and celebrate the history, lives, and legacies of the 44 U.S. presidents.” Whether you want to embark upon an immersive tour of a presidential home or take a look at their private lives, from their childhoods to their favorite pastimes and personal chefs, you can do so with Google’s help.
Google Arts & Culture, which has brought you behind the scenes of some of the most iconic ballets, operas, and other creative achievements, is now bringing you an intimate portrait of America’s most public office. With the program’s latest update, you’ll be able to check out 25 presidential portraits captured by way of Google’s Art Camera. Even seeing these portraits in person wouldn’t be any better — indeed, the web giant says, “These gigapixel quality images allow you to zoom in and explore details of these portraits more thoroughly than you could with the naked eye.”
Moreover, Google is debuting 17 new 360-degree virtual tours that can be experienced on either iOS or Android, and for a more immersive experience, via Google Cardboard. Classrooms can benefit as well, as teachers are being invited to use Google Expeditions to take students on virtual field trips of the White House without ever leaving campus. And if the presidential residence isn’t enough, you can check out Ronald Reagan’s Air Force One (now housed in his Presidential Library), and other methods of transportation utilized by different American leaders.
“Our Presidents’ Day collection covers the vast political and personal histories of our U.S. heads of state, full of intriguing and surprising stories that allow for anyone with an internet connection to turn into a presidential historian,” Google concluded, “We hope you enjoy!”