Opening Reception: The Ohio Statehouse


SMH2019 Opening Reception

Thursday, May 9: 6 pm – 9 pm
at the Ohio Statehouse

How to get there: Make a right out of the Hilton Columbus Downtown and walk (south) down High Street for .7 miles. After Broad St, the Ohio Statehouse will be on your left.

If you don’t want to walk, there will be bus shuttles going to the Statehouse beginning at 5:30 pm, and running every ten minutes until 6:30 pm. Buses bring SMH attendees back every fifteen minutes beginning at 7 pm, and ending at 9:15 pm.
Buses depart from the Hilton Lower Level Alley (next to the registration booth); they will return participants to the same location.

About the Ohio Statehouse
The building was incepted in 1838, with the cornerstone laid on July 4, 1838. Built largely by convict labor, restoration has uncovered examples of graffiti left by the prisoners, which has resulted in several researchers uncovering further histories of the individuals who left their marks on this monument. The building was completed in 1861, and has been in use as the legislature since, making it among the oldest working statehouses in the United States.

The reception will be held in the Rotunda and Atrium of the Statehouse, both magnificent in their architecture and attention to detail. The floor of the Rotunda is made of more than 5000 hand-cut pieces of marble. and contains the Lincoln-Vicksburg Memorial, created by Cincinnati native T.D. Jones.

According to state historians, the marble bust of Abraham Lincoln housed in the Rotunda is the only portrait statue that Lincoln sat for; when asked his opinion by artist Jones, Lincoln said, “I think it looks very much like the critter.”

The Rotunda was site of the Ohio state funeral for Lincoln on April 29, 1865; this “Repose of Lincoln” continues as an annual commemoration on the April 29 anniversary.

The Atrium is the most recent addition to the historic building, creating an interior to what was previously a walkway. A plaque in the Atrium commemorates the speech that Lincoln gave from what was then the terrace, shortly after the Lincoln-Douglas debates of 1858.

(text adapted from state’s official building biography)