"THE RHODE ISLAND STATE HOUSE in Providence is an imposing structure. It is also an architecturally significant one. Built of white Georgia marble between 1895 and 1904, it has one of only four self- supporting marble covered domes found in the world. It was placed in the National Register of Historic Places in 1971. When you enter the building and make your way up to the second floor rotunda, you come to the building's State Reception Room. Looking around, you encounter many diverse historical artifacts such as a small Rhode Island flag that orbited the moon during the Apollo II mission and the silver service set of the battleship USS Rhode Island. However, on the west wall hangs the room's real treasure—an 1802 full-length portrait of George Washington by America's premier portrait artist Gilbert Stuart. At first nothing about it jumps out at you. After all, Washington's image is everywhere in the United States—even the world—and certainly appropriate in the context of an American government state house. But a full-length portrait of Washington and by an artist of the stature of Gilbert Stuart? What could be the story behind this particular work and how and why did it find its way here?"