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Retrospective at MAC: Missouri Capitol Turns 100
4/23/2018 1:00:00 AM
By: Sarah Haas, Director of College Communications

(PARK HILLS) -- On loan this spring from the Missouri Secretary of State’s Office, “Pillars of the State: The Centennial of the Missouri State Capitol, 1917-2017” will be on display at the C.H. Cozean Library on the Park Hills campus until July. Viewing is free and the library is open:

• April 16 - May 18, Monday - Thursday, 7:30 a.m. - 7:00 p.m. and Friday, 7:30 a.m. - 4 p.m.;
• May 19 - June 1, Monday - Friday, 8 a.m. - 3 p.m.
• June 4 - June 28, Monday - Thursday, 7:30 a.m. - 7 p.m. and Friday, 7:30 a.m. - 3 p.m.

In addition to the present building, history of the preceding capitol buildings is offered. The first state capitol building was built in the period 1823-26, and lasted about a decade before it was destroyed by fire. A new capitol building had been approved at the time and was completed in 1840, high atop a bluff overlooking the Missouri River. It lasted 71 years before a bolt of lightning struck the dome and consumed the building in flames in 1911. The present capitol was built between 1913-17 and incorporated Carthage, Missouri, limestone marble, 134 columns, a grand staircase and famous murals by Thomas Hart Benton.

In October 1924, tens of thousands of people flocked to the new capitol's dedication ceremony, which included a parade, band concert, speeches by government officials and a historical pageant.

Pillars of the State uses drawings, maps, photographs and documents to tell the story of each of these landmark events and more. The exhibit includes more than two dozen of the photographs Thomas Garfield Cooper took to document the process of transforming the capitol grounds and building the statehouse and the nearby powerhouse. The exhibit also features beautiful twenty-first century color photographs of the capitol interior and artwork, taken by Jefferson City photographer Lloyd Grotjan.

For more information on the exhibit and the building (and more Missouri history), check out https://www.sos.mo.gov/archives/history/capitol.

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