Maryland State Capitol

Completed: 1779
Architect: Joseph Horatio Anderson

Photo: Robert Deering 2/6/2006

The Maryland State House is located in Annapolis and is the oldest state capitol in continuous legislative use, dating to 1772. It houses the Maryland General Assembly and offices of the Governor and Lieutenant Governor. The capitol has the distinction of being topped by the largest wooden dome in the United States constructed without nails. The current building, which was designated a National Historic Landmark in 1960 is the third statehouse on its site. The building is administered by the State House Trust, which was created in 1969.

Construction began in 1772 and was not completed until 1779 due to the ongoing American Revolutionary War. The statehouse was designed by Joseph Horatio Anderson, a noted architect of the time. The two-story building is of brick construction in the middle of State Circle. The building is designed in the popular Georgian style of the day. A small portico juts out from the center of the building and is topped by a pediment, two high arched windows frame the entrance. On both floors, large rectangular windows line the facade. A cornice is topped by another pediment and the sloping roof gives way for a central octagonal drum atop which rests a dome. The large dome is topped by a balustraded balcony, another octagonal drum and a lantern capped by a lightning rod. The rod was constructed and grounded according to the direct specifications of its inventor, Benjamin Franklin. The dome of the statehouse is depicted on the Maryland state quarter.
ADMITTED TO THE UNION: 1788, the seventh of the original 13 colonies.

ORIGIN OF STATE NAME: Named to honor Henrietta Maria, wife of England's King Charles I


STATE MOTTO: "Fatti maschii parole femine," loosely translated "manly deeds, womanly words," but more accurately translated as "strong deeds, gentle words."

1776 PREAMBLE: We, the people of the state of Maryland, grateful to Almighty God for our civil and religious liberty...

ADDRESS:  100 State Circle, Annapolis, MD 21401