{ subscribe_url: '/share/sites/library-of-congress-blogs/law.php' }

Maryland State House — Pic of the Week

When Andrew Weber wrote his blog post on the Wisconsin State Capitol, he asked readers if they had a favorite state capitol. Reading that, I knew I had to write about one of my two favorite state capitols, the Maryland State House in Annapolis.

Every state capitol has something unique to admire. The state house of Maryland has unique features dating to its colonial period. The Maryland State House is the oldest state house in continuous use in the United States, starting operation in 1772, and it is the only state house to have served as the capitol of the United States. The Congress of the Confederation met there from November 26, 1783 to August 13, 1784. During that time period, then-General George Washington resigned his commission as Commander-in-Chief of the Continental Army, and the Treaty of Paris was signed there.

The entire Georgian-style capitol is handsome, with its raised setting, leaded windows, and Corinthian columns, but the most recognizable feature of the Maryland State House is its cupola. You’ve probably seen it: it was featured on the Maryland quarter in the U.S. Mint’s state quarter series. This dome is special, because it was constructed without any nails and it is still held together by wooden pegs reinforced by iron straps, as originally designed. It is the oldest wooden dome in the United States. There is some speculation that the cupola was modeled on Schloss Karlsruhe (Karlsruhe Palace) in Karlsruhe, Germany. Regardless of the dome’s architectural inspiration, one hopes that its image serves as an inspiration to lawmakers and citizens.

Maryland State House Dome [photo by Rebecca Raupach]

Maryland State House, view with the state seal on the pediment and the Maryland state flag in foreground, August 2017 [photo by Rebecca Raupach]

2 Comments

  1. rose ann davis
    September 20, 2017 at 8:29 pm

    We frequently ignore the historic landmarks that we pass daily, so it is especially good to draw attention to a local site that many people ignore. Excellent photos encourage us to want to take a second look on our next turn around the circle. Thanks.

  2. Gene Davis
    September 20, 2017 at 9:29 pm

    I love the photographs by Rebecca Raupach. They are so clear and show the grand old building as one would wish to view it. She certainly has an eye for capturing that moment in time.

Add a Comment

This blog is governed by the general rules of respectful civil discourse. You are fully responsible for everything that you post. The content of all comments is released into the public domain unless clearly stated otherwise. The Library of Congress does not control the content posted. Nevertheless, the Library of Congress may monitor any user-generated content as it chooses and reserves the right to remove content for any reason whatever, without consent. Gratuitous links to sites are viewed as spam and may result in removed comments. We further reserve the right, in our sole discretion, to remove a user's privilege to post content on the Library site. Read our Comment and Posting Policy.

Required fields are indicated with an * asterisk.