Thursday, September 12, 2013

Seeing Jerry Brown, and Others

Actually, we got to see more than the governor on our trip to Sacramento and the State Capitol on Monday.  It was a pretty memorable day.  We started out on our day trip from our campground in Fairfield, California (Travis AFB Family Campground).  We took I-80 all the way to the downtown area of Sacramento and easily found a place to park for a few hours across the street.
We quickly found the front entrance.  There were some protesters getting ready for a noon time rally.  And some 'Vote for Cindy Sheehan' tables set up.
Not sure what that was all about but it happened to be 'California Statehood Day' and the first day of the new state legislature session.  It was not overly crowded.  We went through security and into the rotunda to the information table and picked up some brochures and maps of the building.  We found the volunteers to be nice folks and had some friendly conversation.

Then we went downstairs and found the Governors Office right down the hallway with some State Troopers outside near the large golden bear.
And a crowd of about 20 which was waiting for the new conference to begin.  "Jerry Brown is coming out in a few minutes and will be making a statement on the prisons", was the word on the street.
So we waited around and about 15 minutes later, amidst the crowd and TV cameras (and a blogger) he appear with some aides and had a short statement before his prison expert explained what was going on and what they were going to do.
Pam and I were excited to be able to catch a glimpse of the famous governor.

By then, it was lunch time and we went back outside and had a picnic on the nice grounds and people watched some.  We weren't the only ones enjoying some nice weather at lunch time.

Then we went back in to the capitol for round two.  The building on the outside looks modest, well cared for and very open and beautiful on the inside.
The rotunda, state seal, statue of Christopher Columbus and lighted hallways made for a great first impression.Interestingly enough - like a few of the other state capitols we have seen, it recently has undergone a very extensive modernization to bring it back to its former glory.

Our first stop was up to the second floor and down the hallway to the Assembly.
As we approached, a lady worker out of the "President Pro Tem's" office was leaving and told us where to the floor of the chambers were.  She let us inside for a couple of minutes as her guest and I took some pictures.
Then we went up to the gallery and found out Jackie Robinson's widow(Rachel) (yes -THE Jackie Robinson, #42) was going to receive some type of commemoration later in the chambers.  We went upstairs and waited.  And sure enough, her entourage and the assemblyman from LA entered the floor. She is pretty amazing to be in her 90's and as active as she is.  And she looked beautiful and very gracious.

Then the first session began. There were no pictures allowed after that point.  I was glad I snapped a few before it all began.  After a few minutes, we left and went over to the Senate.  The session there was underway and no pictures.  Missed out on that one.  But security let me take one picture of the open door to the chamber gallery.
In one of the hallways we saw portraits of some of the former governors
On different floors there were some historical displays of some offices in the capitol in the early 1900's.
Other historical displays showed scenes of the 1930's and more migration to California during the Depression and Dust Bowl era.
John Steinbeck's 'Grapes of Wrath' was noted in an individual display because it told of life in California during those hard times.
And behind it, Woody Guthrie's guitar and an original song he wrote in 1940.
Outside on the grounds of the capitol, we found a replica of the Liberty Bell.
In 1955, the U.S. Treasury Department cast 55 replicas of the Liberty Bell and sent them to all U.S. states and territories as part of a Savings Bond drive called, "Save Your Independence".  Now, when we visit another capitol, we always look for the Liberty Bell.

It was a beautiful day in Sacramento, perfect for seeing the California State Capitol.

Thanks for joining us today on the Roadrunner Chronicles!  And thanks for those comments ~ we always enjoy hearing from you!

Until next time...


  1. I would have been really excited about seeing the Governor. Beautiful building. I didn't know that about the Liberty Bells. Now I'm going to have to be on the lookout for them also.

  2. You are having quite the adventure! Celebrity sightings and history all rolled into one!

  3. The Grapes of Wrath is one of my favorite books and I am a bit of a political junky so I would loved to get a photo of the famous Jerry Brown..Too bad Arnold didn't pop in unexpected! ;-)

  4. We love state capitols, good tour! Lucky to see some of the movers and shakers:)