Did You Know? 1839.

John F. Rague – Creator Of A Classic.
Did You Know – the audio version.

1839 – John F. Rague – Designer of Iowa’s Old Stone Capitol.

Thanks to John F. Rague – a very-talented man from Springfield, Illinois – and a personal friend of Abraham Lincoln – Iowa City has Old Capitol – a building just about any person in the world would recognize today. This iconic structure, opening in 1841, has become the centerpiece of Iowa history – even being used as the official logo for the University of Iowa and the building most representative of Iowa’s rich heritage.

Known as a successful architect from Springfield, the Iowa Territorial commission contacted Rague, age 40, in 1839, inviting him to design a building similar in style to his successful state capitol project in Springfield, Illinois. As you can see from the pictures above, the similarities between the two buildings are striking, with the only major differences being that of the building’s depth and dome size.


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