Governor Mary Fallin today announced several events over the next few weeks related to the centennial celebration of the Oklahoma Capitol building.
The governor will host a public ceremony commemorating the centennial. This ceremony will highlight a time capsule, which is planned to be opened 100 years from now and preserved within the newly renovated lower level of the Capitol in the interim. Artifacts donated to the time capsule will be displayed in the Capitol’s 4th floor rotunda on Monday, June 26, starting at 1 pm and the ceremony will be held at 2 pm.
Other items to commemorate the building’s 100th birthday include commissioning a painting of the Capitol that will hang in the Capitol upon completion, a guest book for Oklahomans to sign and offer thoughts and hopes for the next 100 years that will be included in the time capsule, and flying at the Capitol for two weeks, starting June 19, the original state flag that was in use when the Capitol was built.
OETA will re-broadcast its special program on the Capitol building, “Stateline: Oklahoma Rising”, at 7 pm on Thursday, June 29th.
These commemorations are possible at no cost to taxpayers thanks to private funds raised during an event at the Oklahoma History Center and hosted by all the living Oklahoma governors, including Fallin and past governors George Nigh, David Walters, Frank Keating, Brad Henry and David Boren (in absentia).
“Our beautiful Capitol building was completed on June 30, 1917,” said Fallin. “It has been an honor to work in the ‘People’s House’ during my political career, and an honor to oversee preserving and protecting it for future generations. As The Oklahoman editorialized when the cornerstone was dedicated in 1915, ‘It is your state capitol. Your civic pride helped to make it possible. It was builded [sic] for you and your servants of Oklahoma officialdom. It is yours.’ Through this celebration of 100 years and the painstaking restoration taking place, we can honor our great state, our great people, and our proud heritage.”
The original state flag, which was approved and adopted in the spring of 1911 by then-Governor Lee Cruce, includes a striking red field with a white star in the middle that includes the number 46 in blue. The 46-star flag remained Oklahoma’s state flag until 1925, when a design very similar to today’s version was adopted.
Due to the construction at the Capitol, the time capsule will not be permanently installed until the renovation nears completion. The artifacts donated to the time capsule represent all facets of Oklahoma and its people. The guest book will be available in the visitor’s center on the 1st floor of the Capitol for signature and viewing beginning Monday, June 19.