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World's Columbian Exposition

The World's Columbian Exposition (the official shortened name for the World's Fair: Columbian Exposition, also known as the Chicago World's Fair and Chicago Columbian Exposition) was a world's fair held in Chicago in 1893 to celebrate the 400th anniversary of Christopher Columbus's arrival in the New World in 1492. The centerpiece of the Fair, the large water pool, represented the long voyage Columbus took to the New World. Chicago bested New York City; Washington, D.C.; and St. Louis for the honor of hosting the fair. The Exposition was an influential social and cultural event and had a profound effect on architecture, sanitation, the arts, Chicago's self-image, and American industrial optimism.

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The admission to the fair cost fifty cents and nearly 27 million people attended the fair. At the time of the fair, attendance of this magnitude was impressive seeing as the population of Chicago had only reached 1 million in 1890. there were over 65,000 exhibitions in the fair and almost every state had its own building showing off the many different cultures making each state unique. there were 46 countries that participated as well. The Midway Plaisance was the first of it's kind and stretched a mile long and was separate from the rest of the fair because it was considered lowbrow entertainment. The exhibits included strippers, bars, camel rides, snake charmers, magicians, and sword dancers and was, as a result, the most popular section of the fair.

Contributed by Kari Pearl

The Exposition itself was built in such a rush that it actually opened a year late. The fair marked the coming to the Americas in 1492 by the famous Christopher Columbus so the fair was set to open in 1892. Due to the rapid growth of the fair, many of the buildings were not built to last longer than the length of the fair itself. Only one building was created to withstand any type of weather condition or disaster of any kind. The building was and is called the Museum of Science and Industry, it held many precious works of art for the fair and needed to be built in order to protect the valuables inside it.

Contributed by Kari Pearl

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