Today, I visited the Milwaukee Public Library's beautiful Central Library to do research for a couple upcoming stories. While I was there, I asked to see the dome.
The stately and ornate library building, 814 W. Wisconsin Ave., was built between 1893 and 1897 and was designed by architects Ferry & Clas. It's made of Bedford (Indiana) limestone and the interior has incredible tile work, marble and many other eye-catching details.¬†
At the top of the Classical Revival gem is a low, wide dome flanked by eagles. Follow me...
This is what the dome looks like on the outside and from the roof to the east:
There's one of the eagles, with one of Downtown's ubiquitous gulls perched atop its head:
This is what the dome looks like if you're in the lobby:
Everything's more fun if you circle up to it:
First, they decorated the ceiling, then they bashed a hole through it for the staircase:
The inside of the dome:
It's quite spacious:
There appears to be another spiral staircase in pieces:
Watch your step on the way down:
Want to see it for yourself? The dome is open during Doors Open MKE, Sept. 20-21.
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