I have a practice of posting a photograph on social media for each day that I work during the Maryland General Assembly’s legislative session. I usually do not photograph people, instead looking for interesting details and angles throughout the historic State House and state government complex. The 2020 General Assembly session was the first to end earlier than the usual 90 days in well more than a century, as the coronavirus swept into Maryland.
Here’s a look at what I photographed this year.
1/90. New session, new series of daily photos. 2/90. “Four Centuries of History.” Built between 1772-1779, the Maryland State House is the oldest state capital building in continuous legislative use. 3/90. You can still send mail in the House of Delegates building. 6/90. There are a lot of old-school signs in the State House, including this one in a corner of the Archives Room on the main floor. 7/90. View from the Governor’s Reception Room on the second floor. 8/90. Boxes of budget books stacked in the governor’s press office. 9/90. Detail on the floor in the Governor’s Reception Room. 10/90. The ploughman and the fisherman in a mosaic of the state seal in the House Office Building. 13/90. A wreath is placed in honor of the late Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. 14/90. While the U.S. Senate restricts the press during the impeachment trial, the press still has a seat in Maryland General Assembly hearings. 15/90. Who knows what this device does? It’s at the entrance to the tunnels from the State House. 16/90. Dome between two flags. 17/90. We made it to Friday! 20/90. A plate with the Maryland flag covers a Confederate flag on a Civil War centennial plaque in the State House. 21/90. I’ve always liked the symmetry of this railing. 22/90. Miller Senate Office Building. 23/90. View from Francis Street. 24/90. Maryland flag detail on pavers outside the House Office Building. 27/90. This water fountain is so old, I’m not entirely sure how to operate it. 28/90. Even the “new” part of the state House is pretty historic, built between 1902 and 1905. 29/90. Monitors set up for the governor’s “State of the State” speech. 30/90. Entrances to the Old House Chamber are blocked off as statues of Harriet Tubman and Frederick Douglass are installed. 31/90. A room of many names: Red Room, Silver Room, State House Caucus Room. 34/90. I really wanted to bring you the Tubman and Douglass statues, but it’s awfully crowded. Instead, I bring you a fancy detail on the elevator. 35/90. Harriet Tubman in the Old House Chamber in the State House. 36/90. Frederic Douglass in the Old House Chamber in the State House. 37/90. Even on a dreary day, gray day, Annapolis is still pretty. 38/90. A high-ranking government official suggested I bring you a picture of construction on Lawyers Mall. 41/90. On Presidents Day, it’s appropriate to share George Washington in the Old Senate Chamber. 42/90. The facade and columns on the Lawyers Mall side of the State House were cleaned last year with lasers to remove biofilm and stains. 43/90. It’s after 8 p.m., and I’m still working, so the only State House photo I have is this valve (?) on the ground floor. 44/90. There are many hazards in the State House. 45/90. It’s the halfway point of the 90-day session! Here are some happy little berries. 48/90. Anyone who’s been to the Senate Executive Nominations Committee understands the importance of this sign, and getting on the correct elevator. 49/90. A cupola on the James Senate Building and the State House dome, as seen from the Miller Senate Office Building. 50/90. In the State House, you need to know where you’re allowed to go, and where you aren’t. 51/90. Another look at the Miller Senate Office Building. 52/90. The State House has hand sanitizer. 55/90. A copy of Francis Scott Key’s “Star-Spangled Banner,” briefly on display. 56/90. Late-afternoon light and shadows across the public entrance of the House Office Building. 57/90. In afternoons, this area in the House building is teeming with people. Not so busy after long, late voting sessions. 58/90. Between two buildings. James Senate Office Building is ahead, Miller Senate Office Building is behind. 59/90. A sign of the times. 62/90. Among the lovely, old-fashioned things in the State House are the press mailboxes. 63/90. Marble, marble and more marble — as seen looking down from the second floor. 64/90. You shouldn’t smoke anyway, but definitely don’t “smoke” at the State House entrance. 65/90. There’s a lot uncertainty about the coronavirus, but work continues, as evidenced by this table in the Department of Legislative Services. 66/90? An absolutely beautiful morning in Annapolis, especially for March. 67/?? No public, no lobbyists, and now no student pages. 68/71? We keep track of what day we’re on in the 90-day General Assembly session in The Sun’s bureau. If lawmakers make it until their projected end on Wednesday, it will be 71 days. 69/71? Legislating is still happening, and it involves a lot of paper. 70/71? It’s tricky to practice social distancing in this narrow walkway by the Lawyers Mall construction. 71/71. We made it! The 441st session of the Maryland General Assembly comes to an early close today, with the National Guard on hand.