These three photos, all taken from the same spot on the Lawn, capture the Rotunda in various phases of renovation and reconstruction. In 1897, architects McKim, Meade and White rebuilt the Rotunda—with a few changes to Jefferson’s original design—after it perished in the 1895 fire. In the 1970s, the Rotunda was restored as part of the U.S. Bicentennial celebration; the roof was replaced and the oculus repaired. The current restoration project began in 2012 and is more thorough than the previous one. Preservationists and construction crews are working to repair even the smallest details.

A master plasterer repairs and preserves the plaster eagle on the ceiling of the south portico. Stanford White commissioned the eagle after the 1895 fire, says UVA's senior historic preservation planner, Brian Hogg (Arch ’83). There were also eagles—a popular 19th century symbol of patriotism and power—around the oculus of White's Dome Room. Dan Addison

The railings around the Rotunda wings are made of white Georgia marble, Hogg says. Years of accumulated dirt, mold, mildew and other biological dirt have made the marble railings dark, splotchy and, Hogg says, "not so attractive." The residue will be removed with a combination of water and very gentle chemicals. Dan Addison

Tektonics Design Group in Richmond designed and carved new mahogany capitals for the Dome Room, modeled after the original pine capitals. Each element—the acanthus leaves, volutes and other ornaments—is a separate piece which the artisans assemble on a bell-shaped base to form the capital, Hogg says. Dan Addison