San Diego, CA
State Capitol Building Sacramento California
© Christine Till
At the State Capitol in downtown Sacramento, the past, present and future of California interact with equal force. Surrounded by a lush green park, the building serves as both a museum and the state�s working seat of government.
The impressive Neoclassical structure was built between 1861 and 1874. A common feature found in many state capitols, including California's, is a portico opening into a central rotunda that rises into a dome. This architectural convention, borrowed from the Romans, creates an inspiring and majestic entrance. The dome is 64 m (210 ft) high, matching that of the U.S. Capitol. At the base of the portico, seven granite archways brace and support the porch above. Eight fluted Corinthian columns line the portico. A cornice supports the pediment above depicting Minerva surrounded by Education, Justice, and Mining. The opulent interior, featuring paintings and murals, a marble floor, massive staircases and a profusion of chandeliers, is more Victorian than neo-classical and clearly shows the mid-19th century Victorian character of the building. The $68 million renovation of the Capitol building in 1976 was the largest restoration project of that time in U.S. history.
The grandeur of this exquisite building is surpassed by the grounds surrounding it. Capitol Park encompasses 40 acres of stunning gardens, groves and memorials. You could spend all day exploring the grounds before even setting foot into the building itself. Symbolic flowers such as the Camellia and the rose are prominently featured in their own gardens.
Whether you want to see the California government in action, walk through this glorious building or spend time smelling the roses, the Capitol Building in Sacramento is a definite spot to spend some time while visiting Sacramento.
September 8th, 2012
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