About the Senate Chamber
The original Senate Chamber began much smaller than the one that exists today. It was located in the north end of the building, which consisted of only the center section of the present State House. Within the old Chamber, a marble fireplace, draped with tasseled tapestry stood behind the President’s desk, as smaller wood stoves were located on the opposite walls to provide additional heat.
As Maine’s government grew, the need of conducting business grew as well, thus the Senate Chamber often doubled as a committee hearing room. By 1910, the need for a larger more efficient Chamber became apparent. Extending the wings on both the north and south ends, the Senate moved to a new Chamber at the end of the south wing, in a room 60% larger than the original Chamber.
Thus the 75th Senate Session began. With only a few minor repairs, the Chamber remained unchanged until 1960, when it was completely remodeled with new furnishings, mahogany desks and modern devices such as a sufficient heat source as well as a public address system. The cost for the remodeling was slightly more than Bulfinch’s original building. The present Senate Chamber, generously spacious and well lit, with its impressive décor, ranks as one of the most beautiful rooms of its kind in the United States.