Louisiana Secretary of State

Old State Capitol Opens New Exhibit, Celebrates 25th Anniversary of Restoration

For Release On:

February 22, 2019

Baton Rouge - Secretary of State Kyle Ardoin is inviting the public to view the new permanent exhibit at Louisiana’s Old State Capitol. The exhibit’s opening commemorates 25 years since the restoration of the building and its re-opening under the Secretary of State’s Office. The new display also comes on the heels of the former statehouse being re-accredited through the American Alliance of Museums.

The new permanent exhibit, “Castle on the River: The Evolution of Louisiana’s Old State Capitol,” chronicles the Capitol from its inception to its current function as a museum. The exhibit was designed by HW Exhibits and funded by the Old State Capitol Foundation, the Charles Lamar Family Foundation and the Friends of the Old State Capitol.

“I am so proud to have Louisiana’s Old State Capitol as part of the Secretary of State’s Office,” said Secretary Ardoin. “Aside from its beautiful architecture, the former statehouse is rich in history which makes it perfect for its current use as a museum.”

The Old State Capitol originally opened in 1852 and was destroyed by fire during the Civil War. In 1880, the building was restored and the grand stained glass rotunda was added to the building. It served as the capitol until 1932 when the new State Capitol opened.

The building was used for various offices, but fell into a state of disrepair thereafter. In 1991, it was transferred to the Secretary of State’s Office. The late Secretary of State Fox McKeithen led a three-year, $6 million restoration effort, and the building re-opened in 1994.

Today, the Old State Capitol’s mission is to educate the public on Louisiana’s rich history and the democratic process through exhibits, programming and the arts. The museum is dedicated to inspiring engaged citizenship, advancing the collection and preserving the National Historic Landmark.

For more information about the Old State Capitol, contact Press Secretary Tyler Brey at 225.362.5086 or tyler.brey@sos.la.gov.

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