World’s Fairs and Expositions

Collection Description

World’s fairs were landmark events in an era before television and the World Wide Web, before long-distance travel became a routine experience for many people. The Wolfsonian’s collection traces the evolution of the fairs, from the 1851 Crystal Palace Exposition in London to the 1939 New York World’s Fair. Among the world’s fair material in the collection are souvenirs and other commemorative objects, drawings for the pavilions, objects and artwork that were displayed at the fairs, and a vast amount of publications, from multi-volume official catalogs to brochures.

Stacking chair
1939 Golden Gate International Exposition - San Francisco Bay
Teaspoon from the New York World's Fair, 1939
Design for promotional materials for the Golden Gate International Exposition, San Francisco
Buttresses of the Transportation Building, 1933 Century of Progress Exposition, Chicago
Champagne glass: Embassy 4900 Line
Souvenir spoon from Saint Louis World's Fair
Design for an entrance card, Utrecht Jaarbeurs, 7 t/m 16 Sept. 1948 [Utrecht Industrial Fair, 7 to 16 Sept. 1948]
Wineglass: Embassy 4900 Line
The Threatening Shadow [Designed for installation at the New York World's Fair, 1939 (never built)]
Electricity, from A Century of Progress Exposition, Chicago, Illinois
Goblet: Embassy 4900 Line
Tentoonstelling van Palestina-Producten en Joodsche Kunstnyverheid [Exhibition of Palestinian Products and Jewish Arts and Crafts]
Arbeidsbeurs Utrecht [Labour Exchange Utrecht]
Salt shaker: Ford Exposition..A Century of Progress..1934