Kansas State Capitol


Completed: 1889
Architect: E. Townsend Mix

Photo: Robert Deering 6/7/2005

The Capitol building was built in sections and it took over 23 years to complete. The east wing cornerstone was laid October 17, 1866 and was complete in 1873. Work on the west wing was begun in 1879; it was enclosed by 1880. It is four feet wider and six feet longer than the east wing. Construction began on the central building in 1885 along with the remodeling of the Senate Chamber. The contract for the roof and dome was let in 1889. The total cost was $3,200,588.92.

ORIGIN OF STATE NAME: From the Sioux Indian for "south wind people"


STATE MOTTO: Ad astra per aspera (To the stars through difficulties)

1859 PREAMBLE: We, the people of Kansas, grateful to Almighty God for our civil and religious privileges establish this Constitution.

ADDRESS:  300 SW 10th Ave, Topeka, KS 66612


Cheryl Deering
At The Kansas State Line
Photo: Ferdie Deering 1950

Brenda & Robert Deering
At The Kansas State Line
Photo: David M. Deering 2014

 Old Capitol Building

Fort Riley
Completed: 1855

Photos: Robert Deering 8/24/2014

The First Territorial Capitol of Kansas is the sole remaining building in Pawnee, Kansas. The town served as the capital city of the Kansas Territory for five days before it was moved to present day Fairway, Kansas and the town became part of Fort Riley. The building now serves as a history museum.

After the rest of Pawnee was demolished, the former capitol building served a variety of uses, including housing, warehouse, and a carpentry shop. In the 1920s several civilian organizations, including the Kansas Historical Society, the Union Pacific Railroad and the Kansas legislature took over responsibility for the building and repaired it. It became a history museum in 1928.

The First Territorial Capitol State Historic Site features exhibits on Kansas Territory, rail and river travel in the region, and the history of Pawnee.

ADDRESS: Located at Exit 301 on I-70, via Huebner Road in Fort Riley.  Since the museum is on an active U.S. Army base, there are restrictions on visitors, including requirements for photo identification.