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A New State Historical Site

The picture you see here of the State Capitol building was taken this weekend. Aside from a few modifications it’s remained pretty much unchanged through the years. It was dedicated in 1879. A renovation was completed in 1992. Governor Snyder recently signed legislation declaring the Michigan Capitol building and its grounds as a State Historical Site. He says this will ensure its maintenance and upkeep and will give the building protection and preservation. The building is now about 135 years old and is one of about 2,500 National Historic Landmarks recognized by the National Park Service. It’s also listed on the State Register of Historical Places. The statue you see in front of the Capitol is that of long time Michigan political leader Austin Blair (1818-1894).  It was placed on that precise spot in 1895, about a year after his death. He was first elected Eaton County Clerk in 1842. In 1854 he helped organized the Republican Party. He was elected to the Michigan Senate 1855 and was elected Governor in 1862. He was in office until 1865. He was known as Michigan’s “Civil War Governor.”  Then in 1867 he was elected to the the U.S House of Representatives from Michigan’s 3rd District. A position he held until 1873. Austin Blair is interred at Mt. Evergreen Cemetery in Jackson.

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