CONTACT: STEVE PARROTT
5 Old Capitol
Iowa City IA 52242
(319) 335-0557; fax (319) 335-0558
Old Capitol Museum re-opens Jan. 20
IOWA CITY, Iowa -- The Old Capitol Museum on the University of Iowa
campus will re-open Tuesday, Jan. 20, at 10 a.m. The museum had been closed
since Dec. 22 to allow workers to recoat the building's hardwood floors
and to repaint the interior dome and columns.
Old Capitol annually attracts some 25,000 visitors from across the state
and around the world. Built in the early 1840s, it was the first permanent
seat of Iowa's territorial and state governments and was used by Iowa's
lawmakers and government officials until 1857, when the state government
moved to Des Moines. The building was then given to the University of
Iowa. Since that time, Old Capitol has been a focal point of the university,
serving as a library, chapel and armory, and providing space for classrooms
A six-year historic restoration of the building was begun in 1970 in
an effort to return the building to its original Greek Revivalist style.
The restoration included the offices of the territorial and state governor,
treasurer and auditor; the Supreme Court Chamber; the Territorial Library
and the House of Representatives Chamber. The building was reopened to
the public July 3, 1976, as the UI's contribution to the U.S. Bicentennial.
The restoration project also led to the Old Capitol being officially designated
a national Historic Landmark by the U.S. Department of Interior.
The Old Capitol's normal hours of operation are 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Monday
through Saturday and from noon to 4 p.m. Sundays. The building is closed
on holidays. There is no admission charge to tour the building.