Hall of Columns

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Hall of Columns facing north. HallofColumns.jpg
Hall of Columns facing north.

The Hall of Columns is a more than 100-foot-long (30 m) hallway lined with twenty-eight fluted columns in the south wing extension of the United States Capitol in Washington, D.C. It is also the gallery for eighteen statues of the National Statuary Hall Collection.

Column structural element sustaining the weight of a building

A column or pillar in architecture and structural engineering is a structural element that transmits, through compression, the weight of the structure above to other structural elements below. In other words, a column is a compression member. The term column applies especially to a large round support with a capital and a base or pedestal which is made of stone, or appearing to be so. A small wooden or metal support is typically called a post, and supports with a rectangular or other non-round section are usually called piers. For the purpose of wind or earthquake engineering, columns may be designed to resist lateral forces. Other compression members are often termed "columns" because of the similar stress conditions. Columns are frequently used to support beams or arches on which the upper parts of walls or ceilings rest. In architecture, "column" refers to such a structural element that also has certain proportional and decorative features. A column might also be a decorative element not needed for structural purposes; many columns are "engaged", that is to say form part of a wall.

United States Capitol seat of the United States Congress

The United States Capitol, often called the Capitol Building, is the home of the United States Congress and the seat of the legislative branch of the U.S. federal government. It is located on Capitol Hill at the eastern end of the National Mall in Washington, D.C. Though no longer at the geographic center of the Federal District, the Capitol forms the origin point for the District's street-numbering system and the District's four quadrants.

National Statuary Hall Collection Collection of statues in the US Capitol of notable individuals from each state

The National Statuary Hall Collection in the United States Capitol is composed of statues donated by individual states to honor persons notable in their history. Limited to two statues per state, the collection was originally set up in the old Hall of the House of Representatives, which was then renamed National Statuary Hall. The expanding collection has since been spread throughout the Capitol and its Visitor's Center.

Contents

History

The "Hall of Columns" emerged as part of the necessitated expansion of the north and south Capitol wings in the mid-nineteenth century due to the increased numbers of elected Senators and Representatives (also known as "congressmen") with the continued expansion of the United States westward and admission of more states to the Union from their previous status as Territories, now standing of 34. The original chambers of the U.S. House of Representatives and the U.S. Senate had become too crowded with the additional senators and representatives. Under the guidance of the then fourth Architect of the Capitol Thomas U. Walter, plans were drawn up to expand the two sides ("wings") in the previous original central block of the Capitol (also location of the rotunda and low copper-covered dome above it from the original Capitol architects: William Thornton, followed by Benjamin Henry Latrobe and Charles Bulfinch architectural designs beginning in 1793) and build new, larger chambers with additional rooms and offices for both houses. [1]

Territories of the United States political division that is directly overseen by the United States Federal Government

Territories of the United States are sub-national administrative divisions overseen by the federal government. They differ from U.S. states and Native American tribes, which have limited sovereignty. The territories are classified by incorporation and whether they have an "organized" government through an organic act passed by Congress.

United States House of Representatives lower house of the United States Congress

The United States House of Representatives is the lower chamber of the United States Congress, the Senate being the upper chamber. Together they compose the legislature of the United States.

United States Senate Upper house of the United States Congress

The United States Senate is the upper chamber of the United States Congress, which along with the United States House of Representatives—the lower chamber—comprises the legislature of the United States. The Senate chamber is located in the north wing of the Capitol, in Washington, D.C.

Capital of one of the columns. Hall of columns 2.jpg
Capital of one of the columns.

Built directly beneath the Chamber of the House of Representatives, construction had begun sometime before 1855, with the implementation of a cast iron ceiling, forged in Baltimore by the well known local foundry Hayward, Bartlett, and Co. [2] The walls, themselves, were made with an imitation marble known as scagliola. The floor was set with imported encaustic Minton tiles from England (the same still found in the Brumidi Corridors, designed by artist Constantino Brumidi), but were eventually replaced in the 1920s with a floor of Alabama and New York marble. By 1856, all the columns, made from marble quarried from Lee, Massachusetts, were finished and set in place. [2]

Cast iron iron or a ferrous alloy which has been liquefied then poured into a mould to solidify

Cast iron is a group of iron-carbon alloys with a carbon content greater than 2%. Its usefulness derives from its relatively low melting temperature. The alloy constituents affect its colour when fractured: white cast iron has carbide impurities which allow cracks to pass straight through, grey cast iron has graphite flakes which deflect a passing crack and initiate countless new cracks as the material breaks, and ductile cast iron has spherical graphite "nodules" which stop the crack from further progressing.

Baltimore Largest city in Maryland

Baltimore is the largest city in the state of Maryland within the United States. Baltimore was established by the Constitution of Maryland as an independent city in 1729. With a population of 602,495 in 2018, Baltimore is the largest such independent city in the United States. As of 2017, the population of the Baltimore metropolitan area was estimated to be just under 2.802 million, making it the 21st largest metropolitan area in the country. Baltimore is located about 40 miles (60 km) northeast of Washington, D.C., making it a principal city in the Washington-Baltimore combined statistical area (CSA), the fourth-largest CSA in the nation, with a calculated 2018 population of 9,797,063.

Marble non-foliated metamorphic rock commonly used for sculpture and as a building material

Marble is a metamorphic rock composed of recrystallized carbonate minerals, most commonly calcite or dolomite. Marble is typically not foliated, although there are exceptions. In geology, the term "marble" refers to metamorphosed limestone, but its use in stonemasonry more broadly encompasses unmetamorphosed limestone. Marble is commonly used for sculpture and as a building material.

The capitals of the columns are based on "Corinthian" styled columns, but adjusted to reflect an American style with the usage of thistles and native tobacco leaves in the cast iron. [2]

Corinthian order Latest of the three principal classical orders of ancient Greek and Roman architecture

The Corinthian order is the last developed of the three principal classical orders of ancient Greek and Roman architecture. The other two are the Doric order which was the earliest, followed by the Ionic order. When classical architecture was revived during the Renaissance, two more orders were added to the canon, the Tuscan order and the Composite order. The Corinthian, with its offshoot the Composite, is the most ornate of the orders. This architectural style is characterized by slender fluted columns and elaborate capitals decorated with acanthus leaves and scrolls. There are many variations.

Tobacco agricultural product processed from the leaves of plants in the genus Nicotiana

Tobacco is a product prepared from the leaves of the tobacco plant by curing them. The plant is part of the genus Nicotiana and of the Solanaceae (nightshade) family. While more than 70 species of tobacco are known, the chief commercial crop is N. tabacum. The more potent variant N. rustica is also used around the world.

National Statuary Hall Collection

Older image of Hall of Columns facing north. Hall of columns 1.jpg
Older image of Hall of Columns facing north.
Francis Preston Blair American newspaper editor and presidential advisor

Francis Preston Blair Sr. was an American journalist, newspaper editor, and influential figure in national politics advising several U.S. presidents across the party lines.

Missouri State of the United States of America

Missouri is a state in the Midwestern United States. With over six million residents, it is the 18th-most populous state of the Union. The largest urban areas are St. Louis, Kansas City, Springfield, and Columbia; the capital is Jefferson City. The state is the 21st-most extensive in area. In the South are the Ozarks, a forested highland, providing timber, minerals, and recreation. The Missouri River, after which the state is named, flows through the center of the state into the Mississippi River, which makes up Missouri's eastern border.

Alexander Doyle American artist

Alexander Doyle (1857–1922) was an American sculptor.

Notes

  1. "History of the U.S. Capitol Building". Architect of the Capitol.
  2. 1 2 3 "Hall of Columns". Architect of the Capitol.
  3. http://www.aoc.gov/capitol-hill/national-statuary-hall-collection/zachariah-chandler-replaced
  4. "Jabez Lamar Monroe Curry (Replaced)". Architect of the Capitol.
  5. "James Harlan (Replaced)". Architect of the Capitol.
  6. "Mother Joseph". Architect of the Capitol.
  7. "Eusebio Kino". Architect of the Capitol.

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