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State Capitol, Baton Rouge, Louisiana, USA by T. E. Smith-Lamothe

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Taken by
T. E. Smith-Lamothe T. E. Smith-Lamothe
Explore score
1
Print Pricing
$4.00 to $607.00
Size
0.05 Gigapixels
Views
945
Date added
Feb 24, 2013
Date taken
Feb 07, 2013
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Description

The capitol building in Baton Rouge, Louisiana is the tallest in the USA and is one of only a handful of state capitol buildings which do not imitate the Federal capitol in Washington DC. It is a steel frame skyscraper with Alabama limestone cladding and was finished in 1932 --- a brain-child and pet project of then Senator (and ex-Governor) Huey P. Long. Being in the throes of the Great Depression at the time did little to slow this favorite project down! After it was opened, Huey Long was assassinated in one of its hallways.

The entry portico is 50 feet high to seem in proportion to the height of the building and delightful limestone carvings illustrate the history, culture and aspirations of the Louisiana people. Four angels guard the corners at the top and a huge illuminated lantern, visible for miles in the flat terrain, symbolically portrays the legislature as a place of light and inspiration. The building is certainly in the Art-Deco realm, but with an Egyptian twist --- the treasures of King Tut's tomb were touring the USA shortly before its design and affected its decorations, and even, some say, its obelisk-like shape.

49 steps lead up to the entrance, each step engraved with the name of a state and its entry year into the USA --- the first 13 steps form one group and Hawaii and Alaska were added to the top 49th step on either side of the words "E Pluribus Unum" ("out of many, one"). Two statue groupings flank the steps---the one shown here is related to mourning veterans of many eras who defended Louisiana's territory. The other, unseen, grouping represents the European pioneers who settled Louisiana beginning in 1699.


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