SPRINGFIELD, Ill. — Illinois’ Old State Capitol has re-opened to visitors after interior renovations were completed. Visitors will see a new feature, an education gallery and video room.
Exterior work on the dome of the building continues, but indoor plaster work and painting is finished, allowing the Illinois Department of Natural Resources to open for tours on Thursday.
Its hours are 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily.
The building served as the Illinois state Capitol from 1840 to 1876. Abraham Lincoln served in the state Legislature there and in 1858, as a candidate for the U.S. Senate, delivered his famous “House Divided” speech in the Hall of Representatives.
When work began in March, officials indicated the building would only be closed through April. But officials said the project met with unforeseen delays, according to historic sites superintendent Justin Blandford. Combined with the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, the re-opening was delayed.
The $1.5 million project is under the management of the Illinois Capital Development Board. It involves installing a new roof on the drum that supports the capitol dome and restoration of the drum’s columns and windows.
The education gallery and video room details the history of the building, said Von Bandy, state director of land management. An 11-minute video highlights the site’s significance both in the 19th century and today.
Work on the outside of the dome is marked by the construction scaffolding that surrounds it.
Illinois’ most endangered historic places
Broadview Hotel, East St. Louis
Joliet Steel Mill main office building, Joliet
Klas Restaurant, Cicero
Havana Water Tower, Havan
Illinois Terminal Interurban Station, Decatur
Altgeld Gardens Shop Building and school buildings C and E, Chicago
James R. Thompson Center, Chicago
‘Green Book’ sites statewide
Scott Foresman headquarters, Glenview
Stay up-to-date on the latest in local and national government and political topics with our newsletter.
Pictured is the Illinois Old State Capitol in Springfield.
Newspaper is your news, entertainment, music fashion website. We provide you with the latest breaking news and videos straight from the entertainment industry. Fashion fades, only style remains the same. Fashion never stops. There are always projects, opportunities. Clothes mean nothing until someone lives in them.