Cannon Rotunda

Cannon Rotunda postcard/tiles/non-collection/2/2009_071_000.xml Collection of the U.S. House of Representatives
About this object
The stately view from the Cannon Rotunda provided a well-composed scene for a tourist's picture postcard from the 1920s.
The main entrance to the building—at the northwest corner, closest to the Capitol—leads into the lofty Cannon Rotunda. Designed to serve as a main lobby, the rotunda is 57 feet in diameter and three stories high. Corinthian columns on the second floor and sturdy round arches around the circumference of the first floor visually emphasize the verticality of the space.

The coffered dome’s central skylight and the large windows along the second story flood the space with light. These double height windows, framed by gilded pilasters, create picturesque views of the Capitol and its grounds, a decorative device encompassing the intention of the Cannon building’s design, making explicit the visual connection between the two. Though the Rotunda is impressive, it is a reflection of its even-grander neighbor. Opposite the main entrance, a marble split staircase leads up to the marquee space of the building, the Caucus Room.

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