The Provincial Capitol in Dumaguete City was built in 1924 during the American colonization of the Philippines. The Provincial Capitol houses the Governor’s Office and other provincial government offices. Its architecture was patterned after the Capitol in the United States of America. The main body is Grecian, while the columns are Ionic.
During this period of American occupation the colonizers hired the services of city planner and architect Daniel Hudson Burnham to design the new provincial capitol. Before it was located in what is now the Serafin Teves residence at the Rizal Boulevard.
The Grecian style dominated American architecture during this period. It was the first truly national style in the United States, found in all regions of the country. The popularity of the style was due to the strong associations with classical tradition and democracy. It was very adaptable, and permeated all levels of building, form high to low. The Americans wanted to spread this type of style to its colonies. In Manila, similar buildings can be found like the Post Office, Department of Tourism and the National Museum. Other Provincial Capitols with similar architecture are Negros Occidental, Leyte and Cebu.
The significance of this architecture is that it symbolizes strength and fortitude in which the government should always uphold. The white paint is a symbol of purity that should never be tarnished with scandal or war.
All in all the Provincial Capitol Building is a living reminder of our colonial past that has brought to our shores the ideals of democracy. It is only fitting and ironic that the Americans honor their government buildings with architecture from Greece, the birthplace of democracy. Even thousands of years later when the first city-states were built in Athens, so to will their traditions remain alive half way around the world in a place called Dumaguete City, Negros Oriental.