Stairwell Room:
18th Century State House


Front Elevation of the State House [unbuilt]

Attributed to Joseph Horatio Anderson (d. 1781)
Ink on paper, c. 1776-1777
The John Work Garrett Library, The Sheridan Libraries,
The Johns Hopkins University

State House - Stairwell Room   

A Very Beautiful Building

Local architect Joseph Horatio Anderson designed the Maryland State House, which was built between 1772 and 1779. Visitors to Annapolis praised the new capitol, including French philosopher Abbé Robin, who described it in 1781 as “a very beautiful building, I think the most so of any I have seen in America.”

Although this elevation shows a proposed design that was never built, it does illustrate the type of small dome that may have existed when Congress met in Annapolis in 1783-1784. A small dome was in place until 1785 when it was replaced with the current dome. This elevation is one of several design drawings of the State House that are attributed to Anderson.



 

 

 

 



 

 

 

 

 

 

KEy Images on the
Wall

Apprentice cabinetmakers Francis Pavlak (l) and Brian Weldy(r) work in the 
Anthony Hay Cabinetmaker's Shop, 2011
Front Elevation of the State House
General George Washington Resigning His Commission

The Ground Plan of the STATE-HOUSE at ANNAPOLIS
View of Annapolis
Advertisement, Maryland Gazette, December 17, 1783

Key Documents on the Wall

Washington's Resignation Speech
Payment to Negro Cardy
Inovice of Johhn Shaw
Letter from Daniel of St. Thomas Jenifer to David Stewart

Exhibits in the Stairwell Room

John Shaw # 1 Des