The Wisconsin State Capitol was honored as a National Historic Landmark last week, when First Lady Jessica Doyle unveiled two bronze plaques awarded by the Wisconsin Historical Society and the National Park Service.

In conjunction with the National Park Service honor, the Wisconsin Historical Society also named the Capitol a member of the Wisconsin State Register of Historic Places.

"[The Capitol] was built in the progressive tradition of Fighting Bob Lafollette," said Scott Larrivee, spokesperson for the state Department of Administration. "It is a reflection of the people in our state and the values of Wisconsin."

Larrivee said it is a "tremendous honor" for the Capitol to be recognized as a National Historic Landmark, noting it is one of fewer than 2,500 national landmarks across the country.

According to the National Park Service, these landmarks must possess exceptional value in illustrating or interpreting the heritage of the United States.

"The Capitol has Greek and Roman characteristics and is known among architects worldwide as one of the finest examples of the Beaux-Arts architectural style," Larrivee said.

Ellsworth Brown, director of the Wisconsin Historical Society, agreed it is an honor for the Capitol to receive these designations.

However, Brown said, the Capitol has been listed in the National Register of Historic Places since 1970 and was deemed a National Historic Landmark in 2001.

"The designations are old news," Brown said. "But the unveiling of the plaques marks the completion of the renovation project the Capitol has been undergoing over the past decade."

The plaques will be mounted on the southeast side of the Capitol next to the grand stairs leading to Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard.

Larrivee noted the location as a heavily trafficked area that faces many county buildings, calling the site a "prominent place" to display the plaques.

"Our capitol is a building that everyone can come and enjoy," Larrivee said. "It is very special and is a reflection of our importance on state government."