Florida Historic Capitol Museum, Tallahassee

(4.3/5 based on 220+ reviews on the web)
Tallahassee was chosen as the territorial capital in 1824. The first territorial government met in log cabins. A capitol building was constructed in 1826 but never completely finished. It was torn down in 1839 for the construction of the present structure, which was completed in 1845, just prior to Florida’s entry into the Union as the 27th state. Additions to the Historic Capitol were made several times throughout the years. Architect Frank Millburn, who added the classical style dome, made the first expansion in 1902. The 1923 additions by Henry Klutho included two new wings and a marble interior. Finally large wings for the House and Senate chambers were added to the north and south ends of the building in 1936 and 1947, respectively.

Threatened with demolition in the late 1970s when the new capitol was built, The Historic Capitol was saved through citizens’ action and was restored to its 1902 appearance. Architectural highlights include the elaborate art glass dome, red and white striped awnings, and a representation of the Florida State Seal over the entry columns. The restoration of The Old Capitol (1978—1982) was conducted under the supervision of the Department of General Services in conjunction with the Department of State. This intensive project of historical and archaeological investigation makes Florida’s former capitol one of the most thoroughly documented restoration projects in the nation.
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Reviews
TripAdvisor
  • Pleasant surprise of this Museum, is in the Center, shows much of the history of Florida and the United States, meeting rooms with furniture of the time including courtrooms, a pleasant visit.
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  • The Florida State Capitol had to be expanded given the vertiginous increase in the population and therefore, the representatives of the people. Of 60,000 inhabitants in the middle of the 19th century, Florida now has more than 20 million inhabitants. Had to adjust! A new modern (and ugly!) building was built, i.e. a 22-story tower, behind the old Capitol. The latter became a museum showing centres of former executive powers (the first Governors of the State Office), judiciary (the supreme Court of Florida room) and legislative (the House of Representatives and House of Senate rooms). Very successful such as preservation, thanks to the vigilance of the population. The visit is mostly individual, although there is a small explanatory speech during the reception. The visit of the old and the new Capitol is free. By car, the ideal is to park in the parking lot of the Museum & Archives (on Bronough South Street) or parking of Kleman Plaza. Both cost the same price: $ 5 per day. The new Capitol includes a glass floor in the 22nd, allowing to admire the city in 360o. Free also.
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  • Stopped by Capital Museum and walked around. I learned alot about Florida's history. As a Floridian many things I learned about the state and its history. A must if in town  more »
Google
  • Awesome little museum, free and very interesting. Also check out the new Capitol's observatory
  • The staff is wonderful. What a well kept place. Can't wait to visit again.
  • Great place to learn about Florida history and how government works in Florida! The employees/volunteers were very friendly and helpful and the museum is very informative in such a beautiful, elegant, yet simple building. It took us about an hour to skim over the exhibits. A Must-see on your trip to tallahassee.
  • I've been to this place close to 40 times 😷 a horrible experience each time
  • I've gone twice. Pretty cool to see a lot of the historic items, articles, etc. Also recommend going to the Capitol building right behind it and looking out the glass windows on the top floor and the meeting rooms on the 5th floor. I think it's cool that these are free as well with parking available across the street.