We arrived in Casa Grande for a relaxing twelve day stay at the Fiesta Grande RV Resort. We stayed here in December 2013 when passing through the area.
On Saturday we drove to Phoenix to tour the state capitol building. The traffic in Phoenix is terrible, even on a Saturday morning.
The capitol building is not the prettiest capitol we have seen and didn’t have beautiful architecture and paintings compared to other capitols. But it had one of the friendliest security guards we had encountered who went out of his way to be helpful.
It is the only capitol building we have been in that is a museum and not a working building. Due to overcrowding, additions were built on either side of the museum for the House of Representatives and Senate to conduct business and the capitol building became a museum. The museum capitol was built from Arizona rock, stone and granite, opened in 1901 and served as the terrorial capitol until Arizona became the 48th state in 1912. On top is a copper dome with a large weathervane in the shape of Nike, the Greek goddess of victory.
In 1923 the large tile mosaic of the State Seal was laid. Unfortunately the artist lived in Ohio and had never seen the Arizona State Seal before. He was only furnished with a written description and some drawings. When the tile mosaic was laid, it was missing the cow to the right of the miner.
The artist offered to fix the mistake but it was determined to be too difficult to take up the tile to fix the mistake. The motto Ditat Deus means God Enriches. The sun rising symbolizes Arizona’s climate and the reservoir and dam represents water reclamation farming. The irrigated fields of cotton and citrus trees symbolizes Arizona’s rich agriculture. The quartz mill and miner represents Arizona’s mining industry.
We enjoyed walking through the museum with four floors of comprehensive exhibits on the history of Arizona. The Miranda warning law used today was a result of the Miranda v. Arizona court case when a man by the last name of Miranda was arrested in Phoenix, not read his rights and was later convicted. The case was taken all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court.
The Arizona State flag is divided into two parts. The top half has thirteen alternating red and yellow rays representing the thirteen original colonies. Because Arizona is a western state, the rays show a setting sun. The red and yellow colors refer to the Spanish flags carried by Coronado when he came to Arizona in the sixteenth century.
The large copper colored star in the center identifies Arizona as the largest producer of copper in the United States. The bottom half of the flag is solid blue, same as the blue in the United States flag.
The friendly security guard offered to allow us access to a part of the museum currently off limits to the public and under renovation. Inside the large room were silver items originally on the battleship U.S.S. Arizona which had been removed before it was destroyed in Pearl Harbor.
It has been hot and dry. We heard the weatherman out of Phoenix say they have not had rain in 100 days.
Next stop: Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument.