Thursday, January 20, 2011

Baton Rouge Old State Capitol

Tyler and I went to another field trip this past week. We went to see the Louisiana old state capitol building. This was the original capitol building in Baton Rouge before Huey Long built the tallest one that I've also shown you pictures of on this site.

Anyway, Tyler and I met this nice lady Susan who was a tour guide for the building. I told her I am a teacher by profession so she was happy to show us around a bit downstairs for a brief private tour.

One of the the most breathtaking aspects to the newly renovated Louisiana old state capitol building is the view of the stained glass windows in the ceiling at the top of the staircase. Susan informed me that this is not original to the building but it sure looks like it was a good idea to add it. It is quite a sight.

We went around downstairs where we were able to stand at a political podium and press a button to see speeches of former governors of the state of Louisiana. This was a well done exhibit and added a nice realistic touch.

Down the hallway was for sure one of my favorite parts of out trip to the Louisiana old state capitol building. It was the animated Huey Long statue. When you walk into the room the motion detectors pick up that a person is in the room and the lights dim and the lights come up on Huey over in the corner and he begins to talk about his political achievements and all sorts of amusing things. It's most impressive and if you like Huey Long, you'll really love this moving and talking statue. Of course Huey Long was a former Louisiana governor during the depression and later became a United States senator. Many observers felt his popularity at the time was enough for him to run for president and possibly win. Here's me in front of the Huey statue below. Tyler took this picture. He likes to take pictures when I let him.

Huey Long was assassinated at the age of 42 under somewhat suspicious circumstances. The official story was that Dr. Carl Weis shot him over being upset about Huey having his father-in-law's judicial district redrawn to take him out of power. It really doesn't make a lot of sense why this reputable man would do something like this. Anyway, here's the gun that was later recovered that shot the bullet that ended up killing Huey Long.

Though the majority of the exhibits were downstairs, we did go upstairs to see a few things. There was a large open reception room where I believe many parties, wedding receptions and things like that have taken place. Indeed, a beautiful place to have a wedding or reception. It was really nice to see the sun shining through the stained glass window in this room.

We also saw a nice portrait of former governor Mike Foster hanging upstairs. The painting also depicts Foster's grandfather in the background. He was Louisiana Governor Murphy James Foster who served from 1896-1900. Governor Mike Foster was the one who helped get the renovations done to the Louisiana old state capitol building and turn it into a museum. Foster was governor for two terms beginning in the mid 1990's.

Above is a picture of Tyler on the winding staircase. He thought that was really cool. I was a little scared he would fall down the stairs so I urged him to hold onto the railing.

We made our way back downstairs and went to the gift shop. Tyler got a really long pencil and I got a political button with a Huey Long slogan on it, "Every Man a King." I also got a Huey Long bobble head doll to bring to my class. I couldn't resist it and I was thinking my students would get a kick out of it. We had a great trip to the Louisiana old state capitol building. It is something everyone should see.

Information:Hours: Tuesday through Saturday 10:00 AM- 4:00 PM Sunday 12:00 Noon - 4:00 PM-- Admission is free

Contact Information: Call 225-342-0500 or 800-488-2968 to schedule a tour or event