Photographer's Note

These incredible murals adorning the walls of the Kansas State House commemorate major events and the history of the state. This incredible structure, designed by John G. Haskell, is located on 20 acres in the heart of the capital, Topeka. The land was donated by the president of the Topeka Town Company, also a founder of the Atchison, Topeka & Santa Fe Railway. The cornerstone was laid on Oct. 17, 1866. Officials wanted to keep it local, finding building materials from Kansas whenever possible. A key theme of the artistic works was intended to be "the central and always most memorable and most noble era of Kansas political history, the struggle between slavery and freedom," according to the Topeka Daily Capital. Perhaps the most famous feature is the collection of incredible murals, which were created by several well-known Kansas artists, located throughout the building.

It was finally completed on Mar. 24, 1903, taking 37 years to finish, but some portions were not entirely completed until 1917. The total cost was $3.2 million, an impressive sum at that time, but it's an impressive structure. Modern restorations were just as much so, however, as a 13-year, $322 million renovation project has made it look like the day it was completed. There are tons of copper, as well as 17 different types of marble, crystal, and granite used throughout, as well as gold leaf paint, making this one of the most beautiful structures in the state. It was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1971.

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Additional Photos by Terez Anon (terez93) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 92 W: 78 N: 1227] (2146)
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