Because of its creative design that incorporates a lot of symbolism, the Washington State Capital is regarded one of America's greatest state capitol buildings. The self-supporting stone dome, the fifth-largest of its sort in the world, is one of the capitol's most striking features. It was built between 1871 and 1875 and stands today in Olympia, Washington, near the site of the first territorial legislature's meeting room.
Other notable features include the spacious halls with their high ceilings and large windows, the massive doors, and the elaborate marble staircase. In addition, there are more than 9,000 square feet of floor space inside the capitol building. This makes it the largest legislative chamber in Washington by far (excluding the House of Representatives).
The New York City Hall Park on 5th Avenue at 40th Street is the model for which many American state capitals are based. It is an excellent example of Italian Renaissance architecture, and its domed ceiling is decorated with painted tin panels. The New York City Hall Park was built from 1872 to 1874 and stands today in Manhattan.
Other famous examples include Georgia's Capitol Building in Atlanta, Illinois' Statehouse in Springfield, and Maryland's Annapolis Royal Palace where the original Constitution was drafted in 1787.
The capital city of each U.S. state has the authority to decide what kind of structure it wants to house its government agencies.
The majority of state capital buildings in the United States resemble your image of a capitol building: dignified, with columns and a large dome that may or may not have a statue on top. In other terms, it resembles the United States Capitol. These are the capitol buildings of Delaware, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, Wisconsin, and Wyoming.
In fact, only four states have capitol buildings that aren't like this: Texas, Louisiana, Alaska, and Arizona. And even these states share many similarities including: a large area covered in grass, a house where the governor lives, and a lot of trees. No wonder then that when people think of state capitols, they usually think of Dallas, Houston, Anchorage, or Phoenix.
You might also be interested in knowing that there are two more capitals under construction or planning. One is Charlotte, North Carolina, and the other one is Lansing, Michigan. Both are expected to be completed in the year 2025.
By the way, there are currently plans to build another new capital for Puerto Rico.
Many of us envision a dome similar to the one seen in the United States Capitol, where the United States Congress meets. State capitols, like states, are distinctive, and none are identical replicas of the federal edifice, nor should they be. However, all state capitols have domes.
The U.S. Capitol was built from 1792 to 1824. It was originally called the House of Representatives until it became clear that it was also going to be used for Senate meetings. The current building is a replica of the original one, which was destroyed by fire in 1814. The new building was designed by Thomas Jefferson, who also designed the original federal capital city of Washington, D.C. The design of the Capitol reflects Greek and Roman architecture influences. The dome itself is about 30 feet high and 50 feet in diameter at its base. It was painted red, white, and blue when it was completed in 1800 but has since faded due to pollution and sun damage.
State capitols are not required by law to have a dome. However, all have one because they represent the center of government power for their respective states. No other building in the world matches this single structure for its role in upholding laws and representing citizens.
The dome of the South Carolina Capital was constructed out of copper covered with tar and paint.
Eleven states' capital buildings feature domes coated in gold leaf. Colorado, Connecticut, Georgia, Iowa, Massachusetts, Nebraska, New Hampshire, New Jersey, Vermont, West Virginia, and Wyoming are the states involved. The purpose of this decoration is twofold: first, it is a form of ostentation that signals the importance of the state to the world economy; second, it is a way for each state to receive donations from companies who want to sponsor their building.
The practice of covering government buildings with gold dates back at least as far as 1838, when the Illinois State Capitol in Springfield was decorated with gold because of its elegant design. Other famous examples include the Arizona State Capitol in Phoenix (1888), the Georgia State Capitol in Atlanta (1935), and the Idaho State Capitol in Boise (1947).
The tradition continues today with projects such as the North Carolina Museum of Art in Raleigh, which features a gold-dome facade designed by Pritzker Prize-winning architect Helmut Jahn. The dome was completed in 1979 and is made up of 14,722 sheets of aluminum. Within its walls, visitors can see more than 4,000 paintings, sculptures, and drawings by some of the most important artists from around the world.