CH 6


Agriculture's Importance to Nebraska

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Take a Virtual Tour of the State Capitol. Click HERE to tour the Vestibule "Entrance Hall" of Nebraska's Beautiful Capitol.

Hildreth Meiere designed the mosaics here and in many places throughout the Capitol.  She was a native of New York.  She first worked with Capitol architect Bertram Goodhue on the National Academy of Sciences building in Washington, D.C.  When he was chosen to design the Nebraska Capitol, Goodhue invited Meiere to create the mosaics for the vestibule (entrance hall).  Her work was such a success she was asked to create mosaics for the foyer, the rotunda, and the legislative chambers.  After Goodhue died, Meiere worked with philosopher Hartley Burr Alexander who chose the symbols and inscriptions to complete work on the Capitol.

Hildreth Meiere 0600_1501
Courtesy of the office of the Capitol Commission

Mosaics were designed by Hildreth Meiere

Bertram Goodhue 0600_1502
Courtesy of the office of the Capitol Commission

Bertram Goodhue the Capitol architect

Hartley Burr Alexander 0600_1503
Courtesy of Nebraska State Historical Society

Hartley Burr Alexander the Capitol philosopher

The Marble in the Vestibule

Red Marble Caps 0600_0300

Each column in the vestibule (entrance hall) has a capital (a top part) sculpted with symbols of the state, including bison, corn, wheat, and sunflowers. 

How many of each plant or animal are in the vestibule?

The red marble columns in the vestibule (entrance hall) dome are Red Verona marble from Verona, Italy.  Each column is one solid piece of marble and weighs over 15 tons.  Bertram Goodhue, the architect of the Capitol, traveled to Italy to choose them. 

While he was there, he also selected the four green marble columns you see at the entrance to the halls that lead past the offices. The columns were brought to the United States by boat, and brought to Lincoln by rail.

The plaques in the vestibule are for the Capitol’s National Register Landmark designation.  In 1976, the National Parks Service of the United States Department of the Interior decided to make Nebraska’s Capitol a National Landmark. 

What do you think makes our Capitol a landmark?  What landmarks are in your area?

The other plaque in the vestibule (entrance hall) is to honor and remember the Capitol builders, the Building Commission, and members of the Construction Committee.