Travel back in time and tour the Century of Progress Exposition, also known as the Chicago World's Fair.
Chicago World's Fair
A 1933 Century of Progress world's fair poster
A Century of Progress International Exposition was the name of a World's Fair held in Chicago, Illinois from 1933 to 1934 to celebrate the city's centennial. The theme of the fair was technological innovation. Its motto was "Science Finds, Industry Applies, Man Conforms" and its architectural symbol was the Sky Ride, a transporter bridge perpendicular to the shore on which one could ride from one side of the fair to the other.
A Century of Progress was organized
as an Illinois not-for-profit corporation in January, 1928 for the purpose of planning and hosting a World's Fair in Chicago in 1934. The site selected was new parkland being created along the Lake Michigan shoreline between 12th and 39th streets. Held on a 427 acre (1.7 km²) portion of Burnham Park the Century of Progress opened on May 27, 1933. The fair was opened when the lights were automatically activated when light from the rays of the star Arcturus was detected. The star was chosen as its light had started its journey at about the time of the previous Chicago world's fair—the World's Columbian Exposition—in 1893. The rays were focused on photo-electric cells in a series of astronomical observatories and then transformed into electrical energy which was transmitted to Chicago.
The fair buildings were multi-colored, to create a "Rainbow City" as opposed to the "White City" of the World's Columbian Exposition. The buildings generally had a Moderne design to them in contrast to the neoclassical themes used at the 1893 fair. One of the more famous aspects of the fair were the performances of fan dancer Sally Rand. Other popular exhibits were the various auto manufacturers, the Midway (filled with nightclubs such as the Old Morocco, where future stars Judy Garland, The Cook Family Singers, and The Andrews Sisters performed), and a recreation of important scenes from Chicago's history. The fair also contained exhibits that would seem shocking to modern audiences, including offensive portrayals of African-Americans, a "Midget City" complete with "sixty Lilliputians", and an exhibition of incubators containing real babies,
One of the highlights of the 1933 World's Fair was the arrival of the German airship Graf Zeppelin on October 26, 1933. After circling Lake Michigan near the exposition for two hours, Commander Hugo Eckener landed the 776-foot airship at the nearby Curtiss-Wright Airport in Glenview. It remained on the ground for twenty-five minutes (from 1 to 1:25 p.m.) then took off ahead of an approaching weather front bound for Akron, Ohio. For some Chicagoans, however, the appearance of the Graf Zeppelin over their fair city was not a welcome sight, as the airship had become a prominent reminder of the ascendancy of Adolf Hitler to power earlier that same year. This triggered dissension in the days following its visit, particularly within the city's large German-American population.
The "dream cars" which American automobile manufacturers exhibited at the fair included Cadillac's introduction of its V-16 limousine; Nash's exhibit had a variation on the vertical (i.e., paternoster) parking garage—all the cars were new Nashes; Lincoln presented its rear-engined "concept car" precursor to the Lincoln-Zephyr, which went on the market in 1936 with a front engine; Pierce-Arrow presented its modernistic Silver Arrow for which it used the byline "Suddenly it's 1940!" But it was Packard which won the best of show.
The Pioneer Zephyr arrives in Chicago after its record-setting run from Denver on May 26, 1934.
One interesting and enduring exhibit was the 1933 Homes of Tomorrow Exhibition that demonstrated modern home convenience and creative practical new building materials and techniques with twelve model homes sponsored by several corporations affiliated with home decor and construction. Marine artist Hilda Goldblatt Gorenstein (Hilgos) painted twelve murals for the Navy's exhibit in the Federal Building for the fair. The frieze was composed of twelve murals depicting the influence of sea power on America, beginning with the settlement of Jamestown in 1607 when sea power first reached America and carrying through World War I.
The first Major League Baseball All-Star Game was held at Comiskey Park (home of the Chicago White Sox) in conjunction with the fair.
Frank Buck souvenir badge
In May 1934 the Union Pacific Railroad exhibited its first streamlined train, the M-10000, and the Burlington Route its famous Zephyr, which made a record-breaking dawn-to-dusk run from Denver, Colorado, to Chicago in 13 hours and 5 minutes. To cap its record-breaking speed run, the Zephyr arrived dramatically on-stage at the fair's "Wings of a Century" transportation pageant. The two trains launched an era of industrial streamlining.
Both trains later went into successful revenue service, the Union Pacific's as the City of Salina, and the Burlington Zephyr as the first Pioneer Zephyr. The Zephyr is now on exhibit at Chicago's Museum of Science and Industry.
Frank Buck furnished a wild animal exhibit, Frank Buck’s Jungle Camp. Over two million people visited Buck’s reproduction of the camp he and his native assistants lived in while collecting animals in Asia. After the fair closed, Buck moved the camp to a compound Buck created at Amityville, Long Island.
Panoramic view of the 1933 Century of Progress World's Fair
The selected site was the land and water areas, under the jurisdiction of South Park commissioners. It was located adjacent to the shore of Lake Michigan between 12th and 39th streets. Located south of the Navy Pier in Chicago, the site of A Century of Progress had 424 acres of lakeshore and was within walking distance of Chicago's downtown. The Fair Grounds comprised of two man-made lagoons and Northerly Island.
The fair was opened on May 27, 1933, when the lights were turned on with energy from the rays of the star Arcturus. The rays were focused on photo-electric cells in a series of astronomical observatories and then transformed into electrical energy which was transmitted to Chicago.
Unlike any fair before it, A Century of Progress celebrated color and lighting. The architecture of the fair was drawn was influenced by great depression of the time. Rather than focusing on architecture, the fair focused on scientific and technological progress and the manufacturing processes behind them.
The "A Century of Progress Exposition" was a unheralded success and hosted over 48 million visitors in two years it ran. It provided an uplifting glimpse into a future of embodied by technology while honoring the achievements of past.
corkscrew from the 1933-1934 Century of Progress Fair in Chicago.
Elvis Presley collection
West Saint Paul Antiques An Antique Mall with All the Extras
Downstairs is the largest personal collection ofSt. Paul Winter Carnivalmemorabilia on public display, whict includes Louis Hill's (son of James J. Hill) Winter Carnival coats from the Northern Pacific Railway. All so located in the downstairs is our 1933 Chicago World's Fair collection.
Upstairs is a museum of artifacts from the original store of this 85 - year old building, the Cherokee Heights Grocery Store, and an extensive Kitchen Utensil collection.
Located On the main floor is one of the largest IOOF museums in the country. It includes the original, 1855, Grand Lodge sign from Olympia, Washington, and two 7 - foot Grand Master thrones featuring a beautiful stained glass IOOF logo.
Located on the main floor is memorabilia collection of America's King of Rock 'n Roll - Elvis Presley. This collection is on a rotating basis it will be back in 2010.
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St Paul Winter Carnival Museum
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