Michigan State Capitol


This is one of ten chandeliers manufactured by the American Reflector Company in 1879, for the Michigan State Senate and Assembly chambers.  We do not know much about these fixtures however, we do know the following:

The Capitol committee sent a delegation to the Centennial Celebration in Philadelphia (1876) in part, to purchase lighting fixtures for the Capitol.  American Reflector Company (changed name to Klemm & Co. in 1889) was an exhibitor at the celebration, as were Mitchell, Vance & Co., and many others.  

A recent fire in the State Archives destroyed many of the old records, including invoices, etc., but the trademark badge (see photo) identifies the fixtures.  Goetz & Co. refers to the founder, Bernard Goetz, and half owner of the reflector patent with Fredrick Klemm.  Goetz moved to New York to found the B. Goetz Manufacturing Company around 1889.

The fixtures were originally gas only but later electrified.  The fixtures were restored during a restoration of the Capitol building in 1990.  More information about the capitol can be found at the Michigan Capitol Website.  Although the website lists the chandeliers as having been manufactured by Mitchell, Vance & Co, the identification badge (pictured below) contradicted this notion.  A web search by the Capitol tour director found us.           

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