February 26, 2015 •
Welcome! In this episode of the statehouse series we will travel to the southern state of Florida. Everybody has heard of Florida’s great climate, beautiful scenery, and access to beaches at both the Gulf of Mexico and the Atlantic Ocean, […]
Welcome! In this episode of the statehouse series we will travel to the southern state of Florida.
Everybody has heard of Florida’s great climate, beautiful scenery, and access to beaches at both the Gulf of Mexico and the Atlantic Ocean, but not many know about Florida’s capitol buildings. The old capitol building was built in 1845, and it has had several additions since then. In 1902, the dome was constructed by architect Frank Millburn and was the first main addition. The next major expansion came in 1923 with the addition of two wings and a marble interior, with the help of Henry Klutho. Then another two wings were added, with the House wing finished in 1936 and the Senate wing in 1947.
As the population in Florida grew, so did the need for government services. The local government had outgrown the old building. Construction on the new capitol was authorized to start in 1972.
In the late 70s, the Old Capitol came under threat of demolition because the new one was being built behind it. Through the action of Florida citizens, the Old Capitol was saved and resorted to its 1902 appearance, which took four years (1978-1982). The Old Capitol has since been turned into a museum and office for the Florida Legislative Research Center, which keeps all legislative history for the state of Florida.
The New Capitol contains a House and Senate building and twenty-two story executive offices. Both wings have domes. The building contains the Florida Women’s Hall of Fame on the northern rotunda and the Artist’s Hall of Fame. Visit Tour the Florida Capitol to learn more about the history, artwork, and virtual tours!
Thanks for joining us on our historic tour of Florida’s statehouse. Be sure to visit again when we explore yet another capitol!
Photo of the Old and New Florida State Capitols by Infrogmation on Wikimedia Commons.
January 6, 2015 •
Welcome back to yet another episode of the Statehouse Series. In this episode, we will journey south to Louisiana to learn about its capitol’s history. Towering at 34 feet tall, Louisiana’s statehouse, although one of nine capitols without a dome, […]
Welcome back to yet another episode of the Statehouse Series. In this episode, we will journey south to Louisiana to learn about its capitol’s history.
Towering at 34 feet tall, Louisiana’s statehouse, although one of nine capitols without a dome, stands as the tallest state capitol. Recognizing this feature, architects added an observation deck on the 27th floor where one can look out over the meticulously managed, Versailles-like gardens. Along with the garden, many parts of the building symbolize Louisiana’s French roots with this style. However, the American roots can also be seen through the building’s Art Deco, a characteristic shared with the Chrysler building in New York and Cincinnati’s Union Terminal.
A grand building deserves a grand entrance, and so 49 steps lead to the main entrance of the statehouse, each step engraved with a state in the order in which they were admitted into the United States. Consequently, since there are only 49 steps, the last step features both Alaska and Hawaii. Adding to the building’s historic significance, the floor of the main hallway is made from lava from Mount Vesuvius, which buried the lost city of Pompeii in 79 AD.
Although many people worked to construct the building, it was beloved Louisiana Governor Huey P. Long who created the original ideas for the statehouse. Unfortunately, he was assassinated in 1935 during his presidential campaign. Yet his love for the statehouse was so much that his body was buried on its grounds, marked by his statue that still stands today.
We hope you enjoyed this series episode of the Louisiana statehouse. Be sure to visit again when we travel to another state capitol!
Photo of the Louisiana Statehouse by Farragutful on Wikimedia Commons.
The U.S. Statehouse Series is a project of the State and Federal Communications team of summer interns: Alessandra Dickos, Zack Koozer, Elaina Laikos, and Rachel Rodgers.
State and Federal Communications, Inc. provides research and consulting services for government relations professionals on lobbying laws, procurement lobbying laws, political contribution laws in the United States and Canada. Learn more by visiting stateandfed.com.