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Mississippi State Capitol

The Mississippi State Capitol is located on High Street between President and West streets in downtown Jackson. The building’s address is 400 High St., Jackson, Mississippi, 39201.  (High Street is at the back of the Capitol; Mississippi Street is at the front of the Capitol.)

Hours
The Capitol is open Monday – Friday, 8 a.m. – 5 p.m.  It is closed weekends. The gift shop is open Monday – Friday, 9 a.m. – 4 p.m.

Holiday Closings
The Capitol is closed on the following federal holidays:  New Year’s Day, Memorial Day, Independence Day, Labor Day, Thanksgiving, and Christmas. (Since some of these holiday closings could include more than one day, please feel free to contact the Capitol to be certain when it will be closed.) The Capitol is also closed the last Monday in April for a state holiday.

Tours
Guided tours are conducted free of charge by staff and volunteers. Tours are given Monday - Friday at 9:30 a.m. and 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. and​ 2:30 p.m., or visitors are welcome to do a self-guided tour anytime between 8 a.m. – 5 p.m. Group and school tours are available by reservation. To schedule a tour, contact Visitor Services at the Mississippi State Capitol at (601) 359-3114 or tours@house.ms.gov.

A self-guided tour sheet is available by clicking below or at our Visitor Desk on the first floor, north side of building.
Click for a self-guided tour sheet in the following languages:  ChineseEnglishFrench​,GermanJapaneseKoreanSpanish

School Group Guidelines
To view guidelines for school tour groups, click 
here​​, and watch the video to see what to expect on group tours. ​


 

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Parking/Entering Building
Motorcoach and School Buses: Passengers disembark at Mississippi Street in front of the Capitol and enter under the steps.  (Those with passengers who are physical challenged may make other arrangements with Visitor Services.)
RV’s and over-sized vehicles:  Please park in the lot diagonally across the street from the back of the Capitol at the northeast corner of High and President streets.  May enter the building on the High Street side of the Capitol at the ground level.
Cars, SUVs, regular-sized trucks and vans:  As you are entering off of High Street, some Visitor Spaces are available on the northeast side (left) close to the building.  Additional parking may be available in any of the unmarked spaces.  Parking is also available in the lot diagonally across the street from the back of the Capitol at the northeast corner of High and President streets.  If it is not the Legislative Session, spaces are available on the streets along the perimeter of the grounds.  Please enter the building at the ground level of the Capitol at the north side (High Street) or under the steps at the south side (Mississippi Street).

Downtown Jackson Map
To view a map of downtown Jackson, click 
here​​.

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Public Galleries

During legislative sessions, visitors may view the Senate and House of Representatives from their respective galleries. Public galleries are accessible from the fourth floor of the Capitol. Visitors are asked to silence any electronic devices while in the galleries and not take photographs. (The Legislative Session begins the first Tuesday after the first Monday in January and lasts 90 days, unless it is the first year of a new term, in which it lasts125 days.)

Brief History of the Mississippi State Capitol

Designated a Mississippi Landmark in 1986 and a National Historic Landmark in 2016, the Mississippi State Capitol has been the seat of the state’s government since 1903.  The National Park Service describes the building as “…an exceptional example of the Beaux Arts style, vividly illustrating the nationwide spread of academic classical revival architecture in the early 20thcentury.”

While Governor Andrew Houston Longino was in office (1900-1904), the decision was agreed upon to construct a new Capitol, a design was chosen through an architectural contest, and the Capitol was built between 1901 -1903 in 28 months on the site of the old state penitentiary.  The 171,000 square-foot building was designed by Theodore Link, an architect from St. Louis, Missouri, and was constructed by the Wells Brothers Company of Chicago.   Construction cost more than $1 million, which was funded by back taxes from a lawsuit settlement with the Illinois Central Railroad.  

The State Capitol is the third capitol constructed in Jackson. The first building was completed in 1822 and no longer stands. The second building was completed in 1839, served as the Capitol until 1903, and today is the Old Capitol Museum. 

Originally the Capitol housed all branches of Mississippi state government. Currently, the Legislative branch is the only one operating full-time inside the building.  The Governor’s Office remains but serves as a part-time office.

The Hall of Governors on the first floor includes portraits of the former governors of Mississippi since the creation of the Mississippi Territory in 1798 and the state in 1817.

An ornate Rotunda, the center of the building, is located on the second floor.  Rising above is the main dome that includes sculptures of the face of Lady Justice, paintings from 1934 representing part of Mississippi’s history, and 750 of the 4,750 original electric light fixtures illuminating the building.  An eagle adorns the top of the exterior dome and is made of copper gilded with gold leaf. The eagle is eight feet high and 15 feet wide.

More than 10 types of marble from other states and countries are found throughout the Capitol.  Stained glass and leaded glass windows, original to the building and crafted by Louis Millet of Chicago, Illinois, add beauty and natural light from the second to the fourth floors, along the Grand Staircase, and in the minor domes above the chambers of the House of Representatives and the Senate. 

The former Supreme Court chamber, now a committee meeting room, is located on the second floor. The Legislature is housed on the third floor, along with the offices of the Lieutenant Governor, Speaker of the House, and the part-time/ceremonial office of the Governor.  

The Capitol grounds contain one of the 55 replicas of the Liberty Bell and a Women of the Confederacy monument sculpted by Belle Kinney of Nashville, Tennessee, and cast by Tiffany Studios of New York, dedicated in June 1912. The battleship figurehead is from the second USS Mississippi. The figurehead was presented to Mississippi by the U.S. Navy in December 1909, but the ship was sold to Greece in 1914.

A four-year, $19 million restoration completed in 1983 and additional projects throughout the years help to preserve and maintain the original integrity of the building.

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