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Daniel Burnham and Frederick Law Olmsted

BROWSE ALL FROM THIS FIRM HERE

AD Classics: World's Columbian Exposition / Daniel Burnham and Frederick Law Olmsted

04:30 - 14 June, 2017
AD Classics: World's Columbian Exposition / Daniel Burnham and Frederick Law Olmsted, Viewed from the far end of the Great Basin, the Administration Building looms over the court of honor and the surrounding great buildings of the fair. ImageCourtesy of Wikimedia user RillkeBot (Public Domain)
Viewed from the far end of the Great Basin, the Administration Building looms over the court of honor and the surrounding great buildings of the fair. ImageCourtesy of Wikimedia user RillkeBot (Public Domain)

The United States had made an admirable showing for itself at the very first World’s Fair, the Crystal Palace Exhibition, held in the United Kingdom in 1851. British newspapers were unreserved in their praise, declaring America’s displayed inventions to be more ingenious and useful than any others at the Fair; the Liverpool Times asserted “no longer to be ridiculed, much less despised.” Unlike various European governments, which spent lavishly on their national displays in the exhibitions that followed, the US Congress was hesitant to contribute funds, forcing exhibitors to rely on individuals for support. Interest in international exhibitions fell during the nation’s bloody Civil War; things recovered quickly enough in the wake of the conflict, however, that the country could host the Philadelphia Centennial Exhibition in 1876. Celebrating both American patriotism and technological progress, the Centennial Exhibition was a resounding success which set the stage for another great American fair: the World’s Columbian Exposition of 1893.[1]

Courtesy of Wikimedia user RillkeBot (Public Domain) Although the building itself was handsome, the exhibits of the United States Government Building failed to entice many of the fair’s visitors. In the foreground stands the Ho-O-Den, a replica medieval Japanese palace. ImageCourtesy of Wikimedia user RillkeBot (Public Domain) Courtesy of Wikimedia user scewing (Public Domain A map of the 1893 Exposition shows how much of the fair’s buildings were laid out on axis with the court of honor. ImageCourtesy of Wikimedia user scewing (Public Domain) + 16