As a precursor to the quickly approaching legislative session, I have decided to focus my December columns on four main components of the session: The people; the place; the policies; and the politics. Last week in this space, we met some of the people running your state Capitol; this week, let’s learn a little about the building itself.
Located on the site of the old state penitentiary, the Mississippi State Capitol (also known as the “new” capitol) has been the seat of the state’s government since 1903. Although three capitol buildings have been erected in Jackson, only two of them remain: The current New Capitol and the Old Capitol, which, from 1839 to 1903, served as our official statehouse. It has since been turned into a lovely museum.
Fun fact about the Old Capitol Museum: In 2005, it sustained extensive damage from Hurricane Katrina and had to be closed while renovations were underway. To commemorate its re-opening, the 2009 Legislative Session gaveled in at this building.