The Capitol Rotunda and Murals
In 1926 the newly formed Alabama Arts Commission retained Roderick MacKenzie, a Scottish-born artist living in Mobile, Alabama, to design a series of murals to be installed beneath the Capitol Dome. The work was completed in July of 1930. Today the murals are as interesting for reflecting the way in which Alabama history was depicted in the early 20th century as for their intrinsic artistic merit. The themes of the eight murals are as follows:
1. Hostile Meeting of Desoto, Spanish Explorer and Tuscaloosa Indian Chieftian - 1540.
2. French Establishing First White Colony in Alabama Under Iberville and Bienville, Mobile, 1702-1711.
3. Surrender of William Weatherford, Hostile Creek Leader, to General Andrew Jackson - 1814.
4. Pioneer Home-seekers Led into the Alabama Wilderness by Sam Dale - 1816.
5. Governor William Wyatt Bibb and Committee Drafting the First State Constitution at Huntsville, 1819.
6. Wealth and Leisure Produce the Golden Period of Antebellum Life in Alabama, 1840-1860.
7. Secession and the Confederacy, Inauguration of President Jefferson Davis, 1861.
8. Prosperity Follows the Development of Resources Agriculture, Commerce and Industry, 1874-1930.