Photographer's Note

There are many facts these school kids have to learn before examination! And this is their homework for tomorrow:

The Texas State Capitol is located in Austin, Texas. It is the fourth building in Austin to serve as the seat of Texas government. It houses the chambers of the Texas State Legislature and the office of the Governor of Texas. Originally designed by Elijah E. Myers, it was constructed from 1882–88 under the direction of civil engineer Lindsay Walker, and a $75 million underground extension was completed in 1993. The building was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1970 and recognized as a National Historic Landmark in 1986. It is the largest state capitol building in the United States. Although popularly believed to be the tallest capitol building in the U.S., the Louisiana State Capitol building is taller by 142 feet (450 feet tall) and Texas' is 308 feet tall. It has less square footage than the National Capitol in Washington, D.C., but is 14 feet taller.[3] It is, however, the largest state capital building in terms of total square footage.

Construction of the Italian Renaissance Revival capitol building was funded through an article in the state constitution, adopted February 15, 1876, which authorized the sale of public lands for the purpose. The builders of the capitol were paid with over three million acres (12,000 km²) of public land in the Texas panhandle; this tract later became the largest cattle ranch in the world, the XIT Ranch. The value of the land, combined with out-of-pocket expenses, added to a total cost of $3.7 million for the original building. It was largely constructed by convicts or migrant workers, up to 1,000 at a time. The building has been renovated many times, with central air conditioning installed in 1955 and the most recent refurbishments completed in 1997.

Cornerstone of Texas State Capitol building
The cornerstone for the building was laid on March 2, 1885, Texas Independence Day, and the completed building was opened to the public on April 21, 1888, San Jacinto Day. The building was originally planned to be constructed entirely of limestone from Oatmanville (present-day Oak Hill), about 10 miles to the southwest. However, the limestone was found to have a high iron content after it began to discolor. Hearing of the problem, the owners of Granite Mountain near Marble Falls offered to donate to the state free of charge the necessary amount of pink granite as an alternative. While the building is mostly built of the Oak Hill limestone, most of it is hidden behind the walls and on the foundations. Pink granite was subsequently used in many state government buildings in the Austin area.

The capitol rotunda features portraits of every person who has served as president of the Republic of Texas or governor of the state of Texas. The south foyer features sculptures of Sam Houston and Stephen F. Austin made by Elisabeth Ney. The rotunda also acts as a whispering gallery. The capitol has 360,000 square feet (33,000 square meters) of floor space, more than any other state capitol building, and sits on 2 1/4 acres (.9 hectares) of land. The building has nearly 400 rooms and over 900 windows.

The Texas State Capitol was ranked 92 in the "America's Favorite Architecture" poll commissioned by the American Institute of Architects, that ranked the top 150 favorite architectural projects in America as of 2007. In a 2008 poll by the AIA, it was also ranked the number one state capitol.

And if you can´t remember everything, read it on Wikipedia!

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Additional Photos by Gunnar Holmertz (saxo042) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 3640 W: 198 N: 5663] (38078)
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