Holly Grove Mansion - Ruffner Mansion
Holly Grove Mansion, also known as the Ruffner Mansion, is the oldest home in the city of Charleston, WV. The home was built in 1815 by Daniel Ruffner, son of David Ruffner who was largely instrumental in bringing a thriving salt industry to the Kanawha Valley. The Ruffner Mansion served as the home for the family who helped develop the Kanawha Valley while also being a center of industry and commerce during the early 19th Century. Holly Grove Mansion was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1974, and now sits on the West Virginia State Capitol Complex.
West Virginia State Capitol
The West Virginia State Capital was originally Wheeling, WV, and became Charleston, WV, after a shift in political power during Reconstruction. The capital moved on a steamboat along the Ohio and the Kanawha River three times as the geographic transition back to Wheeling occurred once more before the permanent establishment in Charleston. The original capitol building in Charleston was razed to make way for a more prominent structure once West Virginian’s voted for Charleston as their choice for the state’s capital. The capitol in Downtown Charleston caught fire in 1921, and was quickly replaced by a Pasteboard Capitol while architect Cass Gilbert’s designs for a capitol complex were being brought to life along the Kanawha River. Cass Gilbert is most recognized for designing the Woolworth Building in New York, the George Washington Bridge, the Minnesota State Capitol, and the U.S. Supreme Court Building. The first three structures of the West Virginia State Capitol Complex were constructed from 1924 to 1932. Today the West Virginia Capitol Complex consists of four structures: the west wing, the east wing, the main building, and the Culture Center which was established in 1976.