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Minnesota State Capitol

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Minnesota State Capitol


Structure in General

monumental hall
existing [completed]
beaux-arts / historism
active heating (unspecified)
yes, centrally controlled


capitol (national subdivision)


  • The Progress of the State sculpture by Daniel Chester French and Edward Potter was removed from the building in 1994-1995 for a complete restoration and gilding.
  • The project was plagued with delays and was subject to much public criticism during construction. Cass Gilbert insisted on using white Georgia marble instead of the popular Kasota Stone, quarried in Minnesota.
  • Noted painters and sculptors with works in this building are Daniel Chester French, John LaFarge, Edward Potter, Edward Simmons, Frank J. Millet, John Karl Daniels, and Douglas Volk.
  • Cass Gilbert also designed the West Virginia State Capitol in Charleston and the Arkansas State Capitol in Little Rock.
  • This replaced the Old Minnesota State Capitol Building, which was located just a couple of blocks to the south, closer to the CBD.
  • The building is 434 feet long from east to west, and averages 120 feet in width. The central portion, which includes a north wing, is 229 feet north to south. The outer walls stand 69 feet high, while the dome reaches a height of 223 feet.
  • Also known as the Quadriga, the four horses are meant to represent air, fire, earth, and water; the women represent civilization, and the man in the chariot represents prosperity.
  • The Minnesota State Capitol is one of the last and most prominent local buildings by native son Cass Gilbert before he left St. Paul for New York City.
  • The building was opened to the public on January 2, 1905, only one day before the 34th legislative session began.
  • The Minnesota State Capitol's dome is a close replica of that of St. Peter's in Rome. Inspired by works from the Italian High Renaissance, Cass Gilbert incorporated such characteristic elements as a high peripteral dome, an arcaded loggia, rusticated masonry, and an ordinance of Corinthian columns.
  • It was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1972.
  • Groundbreaking ceremonies took place on May 6, 1896 and Alexander Ramsey, the first territorial governor and second state governor laid the cornerstone on 1898.
  • The building features the world's largest unsupported marble dome.

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More Information


75 Martin Luther King Boulevard
701 Cedar Street, 62-96 University Avenue, 700 Wabasha Street
75 Martin Luther King Boulevard
St. Paul

Technical Data

223.00 ft
223.00 ft
229.00 ft
434.01 ft

Involved Companies

Cass Gilbert

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Features & Amenities

  • One of the city's famous buildings
  • National landmark
  • Floodlighting at night
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