Dennis Pennington Room
Room #9 -- $99-$119
BED Walnut - made in local Flatwoods Cabinet Shop of Henry Rupp, grandfather
of local historian, Frederick P. Griffin.
PICTURE Capitol Picture is by Gladys Moore
DRESSER Square knobs with swing mirror
WASHSTAND Oak with 3 drawers, circa 1890
Dennis Pennington was born in Virginia in May of 1776, and came
to the area which is now Corydon in 1802. For twenty-nine years, he was a
territorial and state legislator. In 1816, he served in Indiana's first
Constitutional Convention. As an anti-slavery man, he was quoted as saying, "Let
us be on our guard when our convention men are chosen that they be men opposed
to slavery." When the 1816 Constitution was written and Indiana admitted, the
Hoosier State went into the Union without slavery. In 1825, Pennington ran for
Lieutenant Governor, but was defeated. By appointment and later by election, he
was also Sheriff of Harrison County. In 1809, Harrison County awarded Dennis
Pennington the contract for the construction of Indiana's first
State Capitol. It was originally erected as a court house, and cost approximately $1500. The forty foot
square building was erected of limestone. The exposed surfaces of the building were undressed, using only rocks that had broken with a nearly square face. The foundation was placed three feet in the ground
and made two and one-half feet thick, and the room fifteen feet high. The lower floor was made of stone
flagging, and inside the bar-rail was a platform of hewn timber. The second story walls were constructed
ten feet height and two feet thick. On the roof was placed an iron balance or scales, an emblem of justice.
Two large fireplaces downstairs and two upstairs heated the rooms.
In 1833, the emblem of justice was removed when the building was re-roofed.
A large bell was hung in it's place. In 1873, the building was remodeled.
The fireplaces were closed, the building was re-plastered, and the old stone floor was
replaced with wood. Pennington's building served as Indiana's First Capitol from 1816 until 1826,
when the state's capitol was moved to Indianapolis, and is now open as a museum.