Illinois Capitol Gallery
Photos May 1999
The surprising thing about the interior of the Illinois Capitol is the ornate ceiling decoration. There is only one other similar place, the Iowa capitol, which was done by the same architect. The decorations are all done in molded plaster. Even the "bronze" plaques around the base of the dome are made of molded plaster. The illusion of different materials is perfect.
The interior was cleaned and restored about 8 years ago, when the building was about 100 years old. Since gas light is no longer in use, the building should retain its glory much longer this time.
The original plan was for Chicago to be the capitol, but the great Chicago fire put an end to that. It took 20 years to construct the building in Springfield.