Thursday, October 28, 2010

Salem, Oregon

Thursday - October 28th

Just a couple of pictures from the very pretty campus of Willamette University in Salem, the state capitol. It was founded in 1842 by Methodist missionaries as the first institution of higher learning in the West. It is the oldest university west of the Mississippi. In 1997 they had the first female to ever play and score in a college football game. It is just across the street from the Capitol.

The Historic Elsinore Theater in the old douwntown.

Another building in the old downtown.

Salem Riverfront Carousel hand carved by volunteers.

The Willamette Queen at the Riverfront Park gives river tours and lunc and dinner cruises.

The Oregon Capitol is in Salem which is in the Willamette Valley nestled between the Cascade and Coastal mountain ranges. This beautiful fountain is in the park out front with rose gardens, walking paths and these inset diamonds with all kinds of information about the state.

And some interesting and quirky trivia.

The first two capitols burned down. This four-story structure of Modern Greek architecture was built in 1938 at a cost of 2.5 million and is the fourth newest Capitol in the U.S. The wings were completed in 1977 at a cost of 12.5 million.

The exterior is White Danby Vermont marble. The rotunda, halls and lobby areas are lined with Rose Travertine from Montana. The floor and staircases are Phoenix Napoleon grey marble from Missouri with borders of Radio Black marble from Vermont.

The Governor's public ceremonial office.

The ornate table in the reception area is made of 40 different types of wood and depicts the previous Capitol which was patterned after the U.S. Capitol.

House of Representatives Chamber made entirely of golden oak with douglas fir in the carpet design, symbolic of the state's important wood products and the state tree.

Senate Chamber with paneling and furniture of matched black walnut with alternating designs of wheat and salmon, symbolizing Oregon's agricultural and fishing industries.

Views of the back side of the Capitol from the university campus.

The Oregon Pioneer statue on the top of the Capitol represents the spirit of the state's early settlers. Cast in bronze and finished in gold leaf, it weighs 8.5 tons and is hollow inside.

The base of the 23 foot high statue is 140 feet above the ground. It is reached by 121 steps spiraling up into the tower from the fourth floor out onto a deck providing a spectacular view of Salem.

Five evergreens planted on campus 45 years ago. When you stand in the center, the opening to the sky forms a star.

Moving further south tomorrow.

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