The South Carolina State House Art Collection

Columbia, SC


The South Carolina State House is 143 years old. It was designed by John Rudolph Niernsee and took 56 years to complete. The South Carolina State House and grounds of the Capital Complex are home to many beautiful portraits, monuments, plaques and other works of art. These works honor the many of the people and events that are an important part of the history of South Carolina and the United States.

The Sanate Portrait Gallery features portraits of many governors, senators -- and even a poet laureate. There are 24 images of these portraits in the State's Sanate Portrait Gallery presentation. (right: The renovated Senate Chamber combines beauty, tradition and technology. The Senate Rostrum is made of British Honduras mahogany. The Sylvan Brothers clock behind the desk was installed in 1915. The lamps at either end of the desk date back to 1902. The cast iron columns supporting the balcony date back to 1887. Portraits grace the walls of the Senate Chamber.)

From left to right: Henry Timrod (1828-1867), Poet Laureate of the Confederacy; J. Strom Thurmond (1902-) South Carolina Senate 1933-1938, Governor of South Carolina 1947-1951, United States Senate 1954- .

The House Portrait Gallery contains portraits of Andrew Jackson, Franklin Roosevelt, Woodrow Wilson and many other notable public figures. There are 24 images of these portraits in the State's House Portrait Gallery presentation. (left: The Speaker's desk, constructed in 1937, is made of British Honduras Mahogony. The brass balcony railing as well as the wood coffered ceiling and brackets under the balcony date back to 1887. Many portraits are visible on the Chamber walls.)

On the grounds of the State House are notable statues and monuments, including a statue of George Washington and a replica of the Liberty Bell.

The collection contains other works of art including a bust of David E.Finley, a bust of Robert E. Lee, and a bust of James H. Hammond.

Text and images courtesy of the State of South Carolina

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