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First Floor Exhibits
1. Flagship of the Fleet: Life and Death of the USS Arizona
From the ship's extensive Silver Service on diplay in the Museum to the memorial at Wesley Bolin Plaza in front of the state Capitol, Arizona's namesake battleship is a symbol of the state. The USS Arizona also represents turning point for the nation when it was sunk during the invasion of Pearl Harbor and the U.S. formally entered the Second World War.
2. Arizona's State Symbols
Beginning with the State Seal in 1911, state symbols representing Arizona's environment, society and economy continue to be adopted by the government.
3. The Gratitude Train
Arizona's Gratitude Train boxcar was filled with gifts given as an expression of thanks from the people of France for American generosity after World War II.
4. OASIS: Frank Lloyd Wright's AZ Capitol Design
Second Floor Exhibits
1. Agriculture, Mining, and Taxes
The 20th Century brought many changes to both the Arizona and United States govenments.
In this new "Progressive Era" laws were passed to benefit the heath, saftey, and education of citizens. To implement these new laws, the Arizona Government formed many new departments that are still in use today.
2. Governor's Office
The Governor transacts all executive business with the officers of government, executes the laws, and communicates with the Legislative branch. Reconstructed to appear as it did during the first year of statehood, the office also contians a statue of Arizona's first state governor, George W.P. Hunt.
3. Arizona Takes Shape
February 24, 1863 the United States created the Territory of Arizona. This land had different boundaries than the Confederate Territory created on February 14, 1862, and its Capital was in Prescott. This exhibit celebrates the 150th anniversary of the U.S. Territory of Arizona!
4. Harvey Girls
Today Arizona is known as the Grand Canyon State. In order for this nickname to become popular, Arizona had to become a state and the Grand Canyon had to be transformed into a preeminent tourist destination.
To increase the level of hospitality at the Canyon, the Fred Harvey Company was retained to construct high class hotels and the signature service of the Harvey Girls.
5. Secretary of State
In Arizona the Secretary of State has many duties including: Chief Election Officer, Custodian of the Great Seal, and Acting Governor.
6. Arizona Approaching Statehood
As the territorial government began the transition into statehood, Arizonans experienced social contrast and technological change. Was this situation influential in Arizona's campaign for statehood? Were cultural or economic differences seen as a cause for concern? Did changes in transportation and communication help make the case for an independent government? Find the answers in the artifacts and images of the time.
7. Words form the West: Arizona Stories and Stamps
Map the history of Arizona from pre-history to statehood with stamps, letters, artifacts, and postcards. From the early mail routes on horseback to expansion of the postal service by train and air, postal history is Arizona History.
8. Visiting Exhibit Gallery
This exhibit space features changing exhibits from different Arizona government and cultural organizations.
Third Floor Exhibits
1. Campaign for Statehood
Three years after construction was completed on the new capitol building, the U.S. government proposed the Arizona and New Mexico Territories be reunited form a single state. In this proposal of Joint Statheood, the name of the new state would be Arizona but the capital would be Santa Fe. After overwhelming protests from Arizonans, Congress passed the Enabling act of 1910. This allowed the two territories to apply for statehood separately.
2. Historic House Chamber
The Enabling Act specified that Arizona would form a convention to produce a state constitution. This constitution would have to: meet specific requirements, be voted on by the people, and approved by the President of the United States. The chamber is restored to look as it did during the Arizona Constitutional Convention.
3. Bill Becomes a Law
Even though Arizona voters can directly propose laws, the majority of laws are passed in the Arizona Senate and House of Representatives through the Legislative process. Take a turn passing a law and follow the life of an Arizona Bill!
4. We the People of Arizona
From its inception, the Arizona Constitution was intended to be shaped by the people. As we celebrate our Centennial, learn how Arizonans have kept our constitution unique and alive.
Fourth Floor Exhibits
1. Figures from Arizona’s Past
Go right under the copper dome onto the people's floor. Six life-size statues represent diverse people who helped to infuluence Arizona's government as territory and state.
2. House Gallery
Here the public observed the Constitutional Convention in 1910 and the House of Representatives from 1912-1960.
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