Third Wisconsin Capitol Building (Madison's Second)
Built 1857–65, Dome Erected 1869 – Mostly Destroyed by fire 1904
and South Wings
- 1857 "Enlargement" of the Capitol is authorized. Kutzbock & Donnel are hired as architects.
The Legislature decides on phased replacement of old Capitol by building the new building around the
- 1859 The first phase, the East Wing, is completed. Slowed by events of the Civil War, the
West Wing is not completed until 1862.
- 1863 Second Capitol is demolished, work begins on the North and South wings, and
construction of the central Rotunda begins on the foundations of the old Capitol.
- 1866 Stephen Vaughn Shipman is hired to replace Kutzbock-Donnel's design for the dome with
a design similar to the Capitol in Washington, D.C.
- 1869 Third Capitol dome completed
- 1881 Old Abe, the eagle of the 8th Wisconsin Infantry who resided in the Capitol basement,
dies and is stuffed for exhibition
- 1883 Additions are constructed to the North and South wings. Collapse of the South Wing
during construction kills five workmen.
- 1900 State Historical Society moves from the South Wing to a building on State Street,
citing the need for space and fireproof quarters.
- 1903 Capitol Improvement Commission appointed to study expansion of the third Capitol.
Legislature allows private insurance on the Capitol to lapse.
- 1904 – February 26-27, Gas jet ignites a newly-varnished Capitol ceiling. An empty
University reservoir permits the fire to spread, destroying all of the building except the North
Wing. Loss is estimated at between $800,000 and one million dollars. The remains of Old Abe were