State Capital

state capital of north dakota - click for larger imageBismarck is the Capital of the state of North Dakota.

State Capitol Complex

North Dakota has enjoyed two statehouses, the first constructed during the territorial period (1883-4) five years before statehood in 1889. Fire consumed the Capitol on the night of December 28, 1930. They sold 160 acres of the Capitol grounds to help pay for the 2nd building. The second and present Capitol was completed in 1934, in the depths of the Great Depression. They eliminated much of the exterior ornament from Holabird and Root's design. For instance, a thirty-foot statue intended for the entry plaza in front of Memorial Hall was reduced to a simple obelisk and eventually was removed altogether. They also deleted the decorative etching from the cornice stones of the Legislative wing and from the metal panels between windows of the administrative tower. The abandonment of exterior embellishment does not deny the building's Art Deco roots; rather, that simplification links the building with the International Style, an architectural order which dominated commercial construction after World War II. North Dakota's Capitol was slightly under its $2 million dollar limit, has 80 percent usable space, it cost merely 46 cents per cubic foot! The Capitol Building is 241 feet and 8 inches in height. The WPA workers (Works Progress Administration), made .30 cents per hour and went on strike to get .50 cents. This is when the Capitol went under martial Law 6-1-33. Pictures of Old and new Capitol, WPA workers, Capitol under martial law.