Gardengrrl likes being outside and watching "Sky-TV"
By: GardenGrrl , 5:30 PM GMT on April 27, 2013
Had a great mini-vacation exploring the Austin area.
We went to a cave in George Town and then on to the State Capitol.
The Texas State Capitol was designed in Italian Renaissance Style of local granite. Construction started in 1882 and was completed in 1888 labor provided by thousands of convicts and migrant workers.
The rotunda is a showcase of Texas history. The floor has a mosaic of all six flags that have ruled over Texas. Indigenous people excluded, the flags over Texas are; Spain; 1500's brought a Catholic mission to Ysleta in present day El Paso.
France; which ended badly for the colony commander La Salle as famine, disease and his murder brought the end to French occupation.
Mexico; When Mexico shed the rule of Spain, many cultures were heading for Texas. General Santa Anna decided to break from the Mexican Constitution and declare himself dictator of Texas. This did not go over well with settlers flooding in from a young United States.
After defeating Santa Anna at the Battle Of San Jacinto in 1836, Texas became a Republic. During this time legends like the Texas Rangers were born. They were the first law enforcement group to use Sam Colts' modern six shooters.
The Civil War brought strife within the Republic. Governor Sam Houston pushed for Texas to remain neutral. For this he was run out of office and a new flag of the Confederacy flew over Texas.
In 1865 Texas became the 28th state. In spite of post Civil War strife, Texas flourished. Long horn cattle bred in record numbers, fertile soil promoted farming and then came the oil boom.
Enough history. The Capitol is a gorgeous building with manicured park-like grounds. Here's a photo tour of the things that usually aren't included in the "all about the capitol" picture collections.
The State Legislator was in session so the lobbyists were all over the place.
White squirrels were also present on the grounds although I don't know what political position they were touting.
Here is the Capitol. It's really tall. On top of the dome is the "Goddess of Liberty". She had some surprises.
On the center floor of the rotunda is the first seal of Texas.
Here is a hallway off the rotunda leading to the State Supreme Court.
All the doors have hinges emblazoned with the words; Texas Capitol. They are brass and weigh five pounds.
I love the stair railings. They are still the same color they were when the capitol was built back in 1882. Because of the number of State Police providing security, I did not get a chance to find out if they were fun to slide down ;-)
And here is my favorite part of the series; Red Tail Hawks on top of the Goddess of Liberty. One is sitting on her head.
Red Tail Hawk coming in for a landing.
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