The bronze Statue of Freedom was given an acid wash, which produced a distinctive bronze-green patina. It was lifted to the Capitol dome in sections. The placing of the head, on December 2, 1863, was marked by a 35-gun salute and answered by guns from the 12 forts that encircled the city during the Civil War.
This drawing by Thomas U. Walter shows a section of the dome with the scaffolding used to erect the Statue of Freedom in 1863. Note the detail of the top section, with the head being lifted in place.
Architect of the Capitol