The Minnesota Capitol took nine years and $4.5 million dollars to build. Cass Gilbert designed the building. He also designed the West Virginia and Arkansas Capitols as well as the United States Supreme Court building in Washington D.C. Not only did he design the building he also supervised it’s construction and decoration. It is constructed of Georgia marble and St. Cloud granite.
There are 134 representatives in the House. They are elected every two years. The sculpture in the front of the chamber is called Minnesota, the Spirit of Government. There are 67 Senators elected to four year terms. They meet every other year for 120 legislative days. Both have be restored to their original appearance.
In the center of the rotunda floor is a large star representing the North Star State. High overhead hangs a chandelier six feet in diameter.
In the Governors Reception Room hang six large painting of scenes from Minnesota history. One depicts the signing of the Treaty of Traverse des Sioux in 1851. In this treaty with the Dakota Indians, the United States obtained land that now forms southern Minnesota. The other paintings honor the Minnesota regiments that fought in the Civil War. (Marcus was very interested in these.)
The most exciting part of the tour was ascending the spiral staircase to the statue on the roof. This golden statue is called the Progress of the State. The rider is Progress, the four horses stand for earth, fire, water and air and the two women leading the horses represent agriculture and industry.