A Capitol Setting in Iowa’s Capital

On May 1, When Love Calls officially releases. I’m so excited! This is the first book in the Gregory Sisters Series and it’s set in 1908 in my home state of Iowa. It’s also set in Iowa’s capital, Des Moines.

Researching a city’s history is always so much fun for me. I find most cities and towns have a rich history burried somewhere. One of my favorite things to talk about in this book was the state capitol building.

With its stunning gold dome, it’s been recognized as one of the most beautiful captiol’s in the country. It was built in between 1871 and 1886 at a cost of $2,873,294.59 at a time when the captol building of a state was a matter of state pride.

If you look closely at the picture on the right, you’ll notice the huge capitol is surrounded by small, wood frame houses and buildings. Can you imagine what some people where thinking while it was being built?

The dome is covered in 100 troy ounces of 23.75 karat gold (nearly pure). If you rolled that much gold up, it would only be the size of a ball  you could hold in your hand, less than 7 pounds. The gold orignially cost $8,800. When it was re-gilded in 1998-99, the bill came to $400,000.

One of my favorite parts of the book was being able to share abou the State Law Library contained inside the capitol. It regularly appears on lists of the most beautiful libraries in the world. And from the photo, I think you can see why.

Next Friday, I want to take you up into the capitol’s dome. So don’t miss this step back in time.

Have you visited your state capitol? Are there any unusual things about it? Please share, I’d love to hear about it.


6 thoughts on “A Capitol Setting in Iowa’s Capital

  1. I live in Springfield IL which is the Capitol of my home state. I’ve lived for 30 years between Ann Arbor, MI; Lakewood, CO; Albuquerque,NM; and Las Vegas, NV.

    • HI Carol! That’s a lot of travel! So which of those cities is your favorite? You can tell us. We won’t tell anyone else. :)

  2. Lorna, I’ve been here many times and I love walking around and looking at the gorgeous architecture of this building. I’ve always found it fascinating. Thank you for sharing about our state capitol, and yes, I think it is definitely one of the most beautiful. :)

    • Angi, I so agree. There is something beautiful everywhere you look. I wonder if it were to be built today if folks would say it was a waste of money to put in all those extras. I’m sure glad they splurged back then.

  3. Not sure why my name showed up as Administrator earlier, but it looks like I’m back to Lorna now. :)

  4. I enjoyed your post. I visited the Iowa State Capitol building many times as a child. I remember sledding on the hills in the winter and Easter egg hunting in the spring. It is truly a beautiful building.