State Capitol of Minnesota in Saint Paul

Photo of State Capitol of Minnesota in Saint Paul, Minnesota
Photograph © Wayne Lorentz/Artefaqs Corporation
Photo of State Capitol of Minnesota in Saint Paul, Minnesota
Photograph © Wayne Lorentz/Artefaqs Corporation
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Photo of State Capitol of Minnesota in Saint Paul, Minnesota
Photograph © Wayne Lorentz/Artefaqs Corporation
Photo of State Capitol of Minnesota in Saint Paul, Minnesota
Photograph © Wayne Lorentz/Artefaqs Corporation
Photo of State Capitol of Minnesota in Saint Paul, Minnesota
Photograph © Wayne Lorentz/Artefaqs Corporation
Photo of State Capitol of Minnesota in Saint Paul, Minnesota
Photograph © Wayne Lorentz/Artefaqs Corporation
Photo of State Capitol of Minnesota in Saint Paul, Minnesota
Photograph © Wayne Lorentz/Artefaqs Corporation
Photo of State Capitol of Minnesota in Saint Paul, Minnesota
Photograph © Wayne Lorentz/Artefaqs Corporation
Photo of State Capitol of Minnesota in Saint Paul, Minnesota
Photograph © Wayne Lorentz/Artefaqs Corporation
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State Capitol of Minnesota

75 Constitution Avenue, Saint Paul, Minnesota, Downtown Saint Paul 55155
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This is the capitol that almost wasn’t. Like most state capitols, its creation was plagued by scandal, intrigue, and politics. Unlike most, it was almost moved when the notion of building a new capitol was raised. In 1891 Minnesota’s senate started exploring the idea of building a new home. Even then, the Twin Cities rivalry was strong and Minneapolis thought it only natural that the seat of government be on its shore. Saint Paul would hear nothing of it and fought hard for the new building. Then a third and a fourth option arose: One placing the capitol midway between the rival cities, and another moving the capitol out to Kandiyohi County. Those ideas all fell by the wayside when a Senate committee determined that construction of a new building shouldn’t inconvenience all of the people who had already come to depend on the location of the current building. In 1893, a site was selected on Wabasha Street just three blocks north of the then-current capitol, enabling an easy transition, and quick access to both transit lines and University Avenue leading to Minneapolis. The capitol building you see today is actually the third seat of government in Saint Paul. Its shape is the stereotypical drum-and-dome we’ve grown used to, but on a much more sensible scale than other capitols which enlarge the dome to ridiculous proportions in some phallic display of government prowess. While the Saint Paul dome is, indeed, one of the largest in North America its placement and construction make comfortable with its surroundings. One way this is achieved is through the placement of a gilded quadriga in front of the drum. Like a brooch on a dress, its sparkle draws the eye away from less attractive features and focuses it on the art. The four golden horses pulling a chariot was created by Daniel Chester French and Edward C. Potter.

Quick Facts
Notes
    >1851 - First Minnesota Capitol is built.
    >1881 - Capitol burns to the ground.
    >1882 - 1883 - Second Minnesota Capitol is built. Designed by LeRoy S. Buffington and modeled after the capitol of New York in Albany.
    >1893 - 1904 - Third Minnesota Capitol is built.
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