The construction is steel-framed and covered with white marble. The front was approximately 300 feet wide, with a central temple-like pavilion flanked by a massive portico of 16 Corinthian columns supporting an ornate entablature. Lower wings in the Ionic order surrounded the imposing center portion. The entire structure was crowned by a dome painted red, white, and blue, which is visible from miles away.
In jurists' robes, the judges enter the court through an entrance on the north side of the building. On the south side is an exit leading to the garage. A long corridor runs the length of the building, with rooms on both sides. At the end is the courtroom where cases are heard and decisions are made.
The building was designed by Washington D.C. architect Henry Bacon and completed in 1888. It replaced what was then considered to be a national landmark: Thomas Jefferson's original Supreme Court building (now the Library of Congress).
The new building was needed because of increased activity at the court caused by the expansion of federal power under President Benjamin Harrison's administration. The need for more space also resulted from increasing numbers of visitors coming to see the court at its annual session in Washington, D.C.
Inside the court there are rows of high-backed wooden seats for lawyers, litigants, and witnesses.
The East Front central portico and the West Front exhibit instances of a modified Corinthian column style on the Capitol Building's façade. The magnificent, high-ceilinged Hall of Columns on the first floor of the Capitol's House wing gets its name from the 28 fluted, white marble columns that flank the passage. These columns are about 30 feet tall and have a diameter at the base of about 3 feet.
In addition to being the main entrance to the Capitol, the Hall of Columns is also used for public events. The columns are arranged in four rows of seven columns each, with an open area in between. The top of each column is about half way up its height and has a broad flat surface about 1 foot wide by 1/2 inch thick that acts as a stage for speakers during ceremonial proceedings or legislative debates.
You can see the columns in the Hall of Columns from the Senate Gallery, which has view corridors along both sides of the room. You can walk down these corridors and look out through large windows at the scene below. Or you can sit in one of the gallery seats and watch the action unfold before your eyes!
The Corinthian column was probably invented in Greece around 280 B.C. By the time it reached Rome, some years later, it had been greatly refined. It was adopted as the official style of the Roman Empire and remained popular until the 14th century, when the French Renaissance brought forth new ideas about architecture.
The centerpiece of the Capitol is a stunning 272-foot, 52-million-pound dome inspired by Michelangelo's design for St. Peter's Basilica in Rome. For the next 80 years, the building was the highest structure between Philadelphia and Pittsburgh. It was also one of the most technologically advanced structures ever built when it opened in 1872.
The Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts is located in Philadelphia's Rittenhouse Square. Established in 1802, the academy is the first state-supported art school in America. Today, it is among the largest such institutions in the country.
There are several museums in Philadelphia dedicated to different aspects of art history. The Philadelphia Museum of Art is the largest museum in the city. Its collection includes more than 35,000 objects from around the world.
The Philadelphia Museum of Crafts & Design is a small but interesting museum that exhibits crafts from all over the world. It is located in the University City section of Philadelphia.
The Philadelphia Museum of Art and Science is an interactive museum where visitors can explore the relationship between art and science through exhibitions, films, and lectures. It is located in Center City Philadelphia.
The Philadelphia Zoo is one of the largest zoos in the United States.
You may be familiar with the House of the Temple if you're a reader of Dan Brown or numerous conspiracy thrillers, or if you simply travel around the north side of Washington, DC. It seems to be an actual US government edifice, neoclassically grand and frightening. In fact, it's where the President of the United States lives when they're in town.
The House was built between 1792 and 1827 by John Ewing on North Capitol Street just north of Pennsylvania Avenue. The site was once part of the estate of Joseph Priestly, who invented oxygen during his time at the University of Edinburgh.
After the death of its last owner, Benjamin Henry Latrobe, in 1820, the house was willed to the federal government for use as an office building for the Supreme Court. The court moved out in 1856 and the government didn't need the space anymore. So in 1858, the house was given to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS Church) as a temple. Since then, it has been used for various purposes including a teacher training center and a homeless shelter.
In 1995, the LDS Church sold the House of the Temple to a non-profit organization called "Friends of the National Mall" with the intention that it be converted into a memorial to honor veterans.