United States flag

State Capitols
A Never-ending Hobby


OK everyone! How would you like to be part of this little corner of the "World Wide Web," the "Internet," the "Information Highway?" C'mon aboard!

We challenge you to find some particularly rare images and evasive information! There are a few good shots and several details that just aren't showing themselves to us. The list of what we are looking for is below. Find something great for us, and we can name you in a credit on this page, as well as on the page where your contribution is used and our "Credits" page.

Could be fun!
Who knows? Maybe you'll be the next State Capitol Nut!

Do you live or work in one of these capitol cities, or are you are planning a trip to one? Or more than one? Maybe you have friends there who could help? We're hoping to hear from you!

The Challenge List

Delaware #1 - Partially Done.

An image has been located that shows the weathervane quite clearly. You can see it on What's on Top, Cupola Towers. There is no question it really is a weathervane on top. We still don't know about the lightning rod/staff, though.

What the challenge is:
There is very little information out there about the construction materials used in this capitol building. In particular, We need information about the cupola tower. Is it all wood? Is the domed roof on top wood? Is the apparent flagstaff a lightning rod? If not, why is it so large? Is that really a weather vane on top?

Illinois #1 - Done!

According to Wikipedia, "The (Illinois) capitol dome is plated in zinc to provide a silver facade which does not weather (a feature popular in Europe at the time of its construction)."

What the challenge was:
The dome of the Illinois capitol in Springfield is a dullish silver color. We need information about what it is covered with; could it be nickel? Or maybe zinc? I'm just guessing here.

Illinois #2 - Have one, would welcome more!

Thanks to M.S. of Spring Hill, Florida for sending her idea for the association between the balconies on the Illinois capitol and its location, Springfield, Illinois. Though it is a bit in error, it is included on the site page Telling Them Apart, Unique Archtectural Components with a note of thanks. We will welcome other ideas as well.

What the challenge is:
While it is totally true that I never needed an association to recognize the Illinois capitol in Springfield, it is not awfully fair to the visitors to leave it at that in the 'Telling Them Apart' section, is it?. So, we need an imaginative association for the balconies on the Illinois capitol, and I thought it might be fun to ask all of you if you can think of one. The more the merrier!

Louisiana #1 - Nearly Done

We've made great progress, thanks to assistance from D.L. Mark of Donald L. Mark, State Capitol Buildings and Howard Partridge of Cupolas of Capitalism, State Capitol Building Histories. Mr. Mark sent me a link to and a quote from the Louisiana State Library site that states "The transition from the cupola to the beacon is provided by four massive flying buttresses." Mr. Partridge explained everything above the observation deck is a multi-tiered cupola structure of sorts. The images on this page and this page from the "Cupolas of Capitalism" site show the shiny thing is a functional beacon housing, or lantern. Now I believe all we need to know is, What is it made of? It is certainly not stone or masonry.

What the challenge was:
There is something majorly shiny on top of the Louisiana capitol in Baton Rouge. We need information; we want to know what it is, what it is made of, how big it is, and what it is for. Is it functional, or does it represent something? We also need an image of it. (The more the merrier!) There is one out there that we've seen, but we haven't been able to get permission to use it yet.

Montana #1 - Done!

We have at least one good picture of her now, and the section is ready to place on the site page. See What's On Top, Statues of Ladies

What the challenge was:
The statue on top of this capitol in Helena is hiding from us! We need an image. (The more the merrier!) There aren't very many pictures of the building on the Internet, and we have not yet found any good ones of the statue alone. Take a look at What's On Top, Statues of Ladies to see what sort of image we like. Even if yours isn't quite that good, we would like to see it for ourselves since we just might like it more than you do! Either way, we also would like a chance to say "Thanks!"

Pennsylvania #1

What the challenge is:
The dome on this capitol is very detailed. There is contrasting color trim on the ribs and the center ports actually have lion heads on top. The question we need an answer for is whether this detail is visible from the ground with the naked eye. It seems a shame if it is not.

Please take a look at What's On Top, Statues of Ladies to see images of the details mentioned above.

Rhode Island #1

The interior of the dome is painted with what is supposed to be a very striking mural. However, in the images we have found, only a muddled fringe of dark colors is visible where the four scenes from early Rhode Island life must be. It sure would be great to have a better look at them!

At the same time, the four medallions below the dome are also hard to find in good images. We have two of them represented in the page linked below, but as always, the more the merrier!

Please take a look at Favorites, Intriguing Interiors and see what we mean.

West Virginia #1 - Done!

The dome renovation pictures are here! Extensive searching revealed excellent photos by Linda Weekley, who graciously consented to their use here.

What the challenge was:
October 22, 2005, we are adding another request regarding West Virginia. The newly renovated dome has been unveiled, and it looks different and better than ever before. We need images of the front and of detail on the dome. Isn't it gorgeous?

West Virginia #2 - Done!

Yippee! Our West Virginia image has been found! Antje Schellhase of Tinley Park, Illinois found a photo in her 20-year-old travel album. Thank you Antje!

What the challenge was:
It seems this dome in Charleston is changing! What will it look like? Well, it is being restored to its pre-1988 appearance. We have all the information needed about it, but we need an image (The more the merrier!) of the dome before it was gilded all over. There will be a definite color difference between the ribs and the background in the right picture.


Any information you find needs to be sent with source details. If it is in print, we need the publication name, author's name (if available), date of publication, and title of the article. If it is on the Internet, just send us the URL and we can go there to get the rest we need. If it was on the Internet but isn't anymore, send us what you know and we will take it from there.

Please do not infringe on anyone's copyrights when you obtain an image. If you didn't take the picture yourself, you don't own it. Just let us know where you found an image, and we will contact someone there to get permission to use it on this site.

If you find anything on the Internet, image or information, please be sure to copy and paste the entire address from the address bar at the top of your browser (it starts "http://") into the email to us. That is the best way to copy it accurately.

Whatever you find, please send the name you would like posted as contributor with a quick note we can add here about how you found it to help keep this page interesting.

So, when you have something to contribute, or if you need more information than is provided above, please contact us. Thanks, and Good Luck!

tigerleaf image


Page Last Updated: Jan-18-2017

For complete image credits and information sources, see Credits & Sources.

Site Author: Valerie Mockaitis     ©2005-2017 Valerie Mockaitis