Nearly 230 years after Thomas Jefferson designed the Virginia Capitol, a statue of him is finally on permanent display in the landmark. The $300,000 bronze sculpture was unveiled this past week in the 5-year-old subterranean Capitol Extension beneath the south lawn of Capitol Square. The sculpture, titled “Thomas Jefferson: Architect of Liberty,” weighs 800 pounds and sits atop a 3-ton limestone pedestal in the circular Capitol Extension Plaza, commanding a majestic view down a hallway that connects a museum area, meeting spaces that can double as theaters and stairs that lead visitors into the historic Capitol overhead. The statue is nearly one-fifth larger than Jefferson was in real life, and depicts the Declaration of Independence author at age 42, around 1785, holding his blueprints for the Capitol, which was completed in 1788.The stone pedestal was provided by former foundation Trustee Charles S. Luck III and his family.
“As a former Board Member of the Virginia Capitol Foundation and someone who values the Capitol’s revitalization initiatives, my family and I are very humbled to be given an opportunity to donate the EW Gold limestone base from Missouri for the Thomas Jefferson statue.” Charles S. Luck III said. “It is very gratifying to be in a position to support the Virginia Capital Foundation again, and also to be part of a momentous initiative that honors and celebrates one of our Founding Fathers. I hope the statue of Thomas Jefferson will propel spectators’ to learn more and ask more about our Commonwealth’s and Country’s history.” Luck added.
Background on EW Gold
EW Gold is a dolomitic limestone quarried in St. Genevieve Missouri. The quarry is just over ten years old. That said, the formation it is quarried from has yielded limestone and sandstone for the area’s building stone needs for over two hundred years. St. Genevieve County is approximately 60 miles south of St. Louis and butts to the Mississippi river/ Missouri and Illinois border. EW Gold is just one of several stones quarried in the area. It is specifically unique within North America due to its high PSI averaging over 20,000, it’s low absorption averaging less than 1%, and its gold, buff, and grey colors. With the introduction of the EW Gold Quarry in 2005, the EW Gold stone rapidly became one of Earthworks best sellers. This dolomitic limestone offers a color scheme and texture like no other. The EW Gold consists of grays, buffs, and of course, gold.