Aug 29 – Vermont State Capitol, Montpelier, VT

When we got up this morning, the campground's lake was nearly still … and extremely beautiful

and watched over by a great blue heron on the far side.

After breakfast, we struck out for Montpelier to visit Vermont's capitol (our 47th) with the ridgelines of the Green Mountains in the distance.

Depsite being opposed by New York, the Republic of Vermont was founded in 1777.  The Declaration of Rights in its constitution, approved that year, was the first to abolish slavery in the United States.

The current State House is the state's third capitol building … the two previous ones falling victim to fires.

The Capitol Area of Montpelier is lovely.  As we walked to the State House

we were amazed at how the State had not only preseved many old and beautiful buildings but put them to use to house many state agencies.

The State House sits majestically on a small knoll, framed by a wall forest of green trees of Hubbard Park

On it's gounds there are two cannons,

captured from the Spanish warship

and presented to the state by a native Vermonter, Admiral George Dewey.There is also a statue of Thomas Chittenden, the state's first governor (during its territorial period between 1775-1790 and after its statehoold beginning 1791 until his death in 1797)

well prior to Vermont becoming the nation's 14th state in 1820.

Walking up the entrance sidewalk, of the third State House, which was built in the Renaissance Revival style the newly refurbrished (2018) dome gleamed in the sunlight.

57 foot gold dome  –  unlike most other captiol domes, it is an exterior dome only, with no rotunda or other interior expanses

Under the Dome

Standing atop the dome is a 14 foot statue of Ceres, the Goddess of Agriculture … apropros of Vermont as historically being an agriculturally-based state.

The portico was the only salvageable portion of the second Capitol which burned in 1857.

Under the protico there is a cannon dating from the American Revolution that was taken from the German Hessens after the American victory at the Battle of Bennington

and a statue of Vermont's first hero, Ethan Allen

The entrance door is solid pine with their exteriors painted giving them the appearance of bronze while the interior sides are painted to resemble mahogany

The interior is furnished with finely crafted hardwood trim,

Notice how some of the detailed carving stops before the stairs go to the third floor

elliptical staircases,

and Vermont black and white marble floors.

The white marble tiles were quarried in Danby, Vermont and the black tiles from Isla La Motte on Lake Champlain.  The fossils visible on the black tiles come from the Chazy Fossil Reef and date back more than 480 million years

The chandeliers and sconces were designed and manufactured in Phliadelphia.

Along the hallways are photos of the states governors, inculding Howard Dean who didn't want to be depicted in a suit

and the state's only female governor May Kunin who served as the 77th Governor of Vermont from 1985 until 1991,

a bust of Abraham Lincoln

photographs of Admirals Dewey and Clark who fought the Spanish at the Battle of Manila Bay,

those of the two presidents born in Vermonth (both of whom were elected as Vice Presidents and became Presidents on the death of the sitting presidents).

Chester Arthur (who suceeded James Garfield after his assassination)

Calvin Coolidge (who suceeded Warren Harding)

and a number of importnt quotations.

There is also a first floor exhibit recognizing the four indigenous tribes who lived in the terrotory which became Vermont prior to the Eurpopans' arrival.

Then we stumbled over something you rarely see anymore, these located in a rear hall.

Senate Chamber

Hallway Outside House Chamber

House Chamber

The portrait of George Washington was rescued from the Second Capitol's 1857 fire

Lieutenant Governor's Office/Reception Room

This rocking chaair dates to the state's first Lieutenant Governor, Joseph Marsh (1778-79)

Governor's Formal Office

Governor's Chair made from a timber from the USS Constitution – only the Governor gets to sit in it

Governor Erasmus Fairbanks (1852-53 and 1860-61)

State Seal

Cedar Creek Reception Room

20' x 10' mural commemorates Vermont's finest moment in the Civil War, the Battle of Oak Creek (October 19, 1864)

Stain-glass skylights

Admiral George Dewey

As we left Montpelier, Debbie began shooting some eclectic sculptures,

a number of historic buildings

Court House

and a carving outside the Vermont Granite Museum.

After returning to our campground, we enjoyed a "picnic" lunch on a glider overlooking the lake.

After lunch we watched bees, butterflies and dragon flies flit around blossoms at the water's edge.  Suddenly one landed on my wrist and remained there for several minutes.

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