Gov. Dannel P. Malloy was seen playing tourist and history student at the state Capitol today: He took a private lunch-hour tour of the national historical landmark offered by the League of Women Voters.

On a day like today, when neither house of the General Asembly is holding a session, the Legislative Office Building is buzzing with committee meetings and hearings, but the Capitol is museum-quiet. Accompanied by security, the governor followed his guide through the empty corridors, learning its history.

Rank does have its privileges. Malloy was taken to a high catwalk around the inside of the Capitol dome, not part of the tour normally offered to the tourists and students who often come through the building. It is evident the governor does not suffer from a fear of heights.

Nearly all of state government — the executive offices, legislature, Supreme Court and State Library once were packed into the Capitol, which opened in 1879 on a hill overlooking Bushnell Park in Hartford.

It was built, beginning in 1871, at a cost of $2.5 million. Its replacement cost is now estimated to exceed $200 million. If you are willing to settle for a tour that doesn’t go up into the dome, here are the details on tours at the Capitol.

Malloy on tour

Malloy looks down from the Capitol dome.

Mark is the Capitol Bureau Chief and a co-founder of CT Mirror. He is a frequent contributor to WNPR, a former state politics writer for The Hartford Courant and Journal Inquirer, and contributor for The New York Times.

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