Category Archives: State Capitols Project

Statehouses Project: Arizona

While this may not officially be a cornerstone, it’s as close as I was going to find.

The State Seal.

9 of 50.

Rear of the Capitol Complex.

It may have been a Saturday morning, but downtown Phoenix’s parking surplus was a tad over the top.

Very on brand, Arizona. 

Previous Statehouse visit: Washington

Statehouses Project: Michigan


5 of 50. 

I don’t have a ton to say about this visit except that Lansing was a very friendly place to spend a few hours, and that this building was one of the most impressive I’ve visited to date. With that comment I will let the photos do the talking. 

The Rotunda.

View from the Rotunda to the Governor’s Office (he wasn’t in).

The Gerald Ford portrait.

The Senate.

The House.

Amazing attention to detail everywhere. All 49 of the other states’ seals appear in the ceiling of the House Chamber.


Previous statehouse visit: Nevada

Next visit: Georgia

Statehouses Project: Nevada

On the way out to the APA 2012 conference in Los Angeles, I stopped for a day in Nevada. Landing in Reno reminded me a bit of New Mexico, with an enormous mountain range just outside the city. And according to my rowmates on the plane, ski season is definitely not over. I soon saw what they meant, as light snow fell on my drive from Reno to Carson City.

Nevada State Capitol. 4 of 50.

Legislative Building down the street. The Capitol picked a bad decade for public architecture to run out of space.

But the interior is quite nice. Assembly Chamber.

Bonus of these visits: vintage photos of legislators. Here’s Harry Reid in 1973.

 Governor’s Mansion

Still good snow up there

Previous statehouse visit: North Carolina

Happy 100th Birthday to the State of New Mexico: Photo(s) of the Week


2 of 50.

On this date in 1912, New Mexico became the 47th U.S. state. Communities around the state are planning centennial celebrations, and I trust those will go well. In my continuing project to visit all 50 state houses, I went to Santa Fe in September 2011.

I grew up in New Mexico and my family still lives there, so I’m able to visit often. In particular, New Mexico is home to my two nephews, two nieces, and great-nephew and I hope it continues to be a great home for them. Here’s to another 100 great years.

These photos were both taken in September 2011 in the New Mexico State Capitol in Santa Fe.

Next Statehouse visit: North Carolina

Previous Statehouse visit: Ohio

Statehouses Project: North Carolina

As I continued my statehouse project, I was able to make it back to another state where I lived yet had never been inside the capitol. I spent eight years in North Carolina, just down the road in Durham, but didn’t see this until today:

North Carolina State Capitol. 3 of 50.

Constructed in 1840, the Governor’s office is still here, but it is too small for the Legislature.

Legislative Building, constructed in 1963 one block from the Capitol. The area between them is full of museums and state buildings, with a mall between them allowing views  back to the Capitol.

House Chamber

Me inside the Legislative Building. I can’t help but love that nutty ceiling.

Next Statehouse visit: Nevada (scheduled for April 12, 2012)

Previous Statehouse visit: New Mexico

Statehouses Project: Ohio

Today, while en route from Michigan to Washington, DC with a car full of everything I own, I made a quick stop. I have pledged to go on an architecture pilgrimage to visit all 50 state capitol buildings in the U.S. It’s clear that some state houses were closely modeled after the U.S. Capitol (which I can see from afar on my daily commute), while others only took some inspiration and others went in a completely different direction. I want to assess how local styles changed them, or didn’t.

This will also achieve a secondary goal to visit all 50 states, of which I have only done 26 as of the date of this entry.

Here’s the exterior:

1 of 50.

Me inside. When I have 50 of these I’ll put them into a gallery.

Inside the House Chamber (neither house was in session at the time):

Next Statehouse visit: New Mexico