washington capitol
Photo by Vlad Tchompalov on Unsplash

Who Built the Capitol in Washington DC

The Capitol Building in Washington DC is one of the most iconic buildings in the United States. It is the seat of the United States Congress and the home of the legislative branch of the US government. But who built the Capitol?

George Washington

George Washington was the first President of the United States and is often credited with founding the country. Washington was also the first to recognize the need for a Capitol building in the newly formed nation. He commissioned the construction of the building in 1791 and oversaw the early planning of the site.

William Thornton

William Thornton was the man chosen to design the building. An architect from the British West Indies, he was selected by Thomas Jefferson in 1793 to create the plans for the Capitol. Thornton was given the task of creating a unique structure that would serve as the symbol of the United States. Thornton’s design was a mix of classical and Palladian styles, creating a distinctive building that has become an iconic symbol of American democracy.

Doctor William Dubourg

Doctor William Dubourg was the first superintendent of the Capitol Building. He was hired by George Washington in 1794 to oversee the construction of the building. Dubourg was responsible for the initial construction of the Capitol, and he worked closely with Thornton to ensure that his original designs were followed. Dubourg was an experienced architect and was able to make adjustments to the plans as needed.

Benjamin Henry Latrobe

Benjamin Henry Latrobe was an American architect who took over from Dubourg in 1803. Latrobe was a highly respected architect, and he made several important changes to the Capitol Building. He was responsible for the expansion of the building and the addition of the two wings. Latrobe also designed the iconic cast-iron dome of the Capitol, which has been an iconic symbol of the United States ever since.

Charles Bulfinch

Charles Bulfinch was an architect who was hired in 1817 to finish the Capitol Building. Bulfinch was an experienced architect who had designed many public buildings in the United States, including the Massachusetts State House in Boston. He was responsible for the completion of the Capitol Building, including the addition of the north and south wings. Bulfinch was also responsible for the interior designs of the building, which are still in place today.


The Capitol Building in Washington DC is one of the most iconic buildings in the United States. It was the vision of George Washington, and it was designed by William Thornton. Doctor William Dubourg oversaw the initial construction, and Benjamin Henry Latrobe designed the iconic cast-iron dome. Finally, Charles Bulfinch was responsible for the completion of the building. Together, these men created a building that has become a symbol of American democracy.