The Dolley Madison House, also known as the Cutts-Madison House, is located on H Street, along Lafayette Square, in Washington, D.C. The American Colonial Style home was completed in 1819 as a residence for Richard Cutts and his wife, Anna Payne Cutts, the sister of Dolley Madison. The house was built on a large piece of land, surrounded by dirt roads and gardens, on Madison Street, facing Lafayette Square. In 1828 the mortgage Cutts took out to build his home was sold to James Madison. Upon Madison's death in 1836 the mortgage went to his wife, Dolley, who was left with an uncertain financial future by the former president. Looking for any means in which to save money, Dolley moved into the house in 1837. She lived here until 1839, when she moved back to Montpelier, the country estate of her husband. Unable to meet the financial demands of the estate she moved back to the Cutts House in 1843 and eventually sold Montpelier in 1844. She would live in this home until her death in 1849. In 1851 the home was purchased by Rear Admiral Charles Wilkes, who undertook the first major changes to the structure, including altering the roof and switching the main entrance from Madison Street to H Street. In 1886 the building was sold to the Cosmos Club, a local social club, which began major changes to ths structure, including raising the roof and adding modern amenities. The club owned the building until 1952. After that the National Aeronautics and Space Administration took over the building. It was here in the Dolley Madison House's ballroom, in April 1959, that the first seven Mercury astronauts were presented by NASA. Shortly after this momentous event plans were underway to raze the home, and the other surviving houses on Lafayette Square, to make room for a new federal building complex. With efforts from First Lady Jacqueline Kennedy efforts were made to halt the destruction and save the historic properties which still stood. In 1970 Lafayette Square was designated a National Historic Landmark District.