World's Columbian Exposition Souvenir Paperweight

World's Columbian Exposition Souvenir Paperweight

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Description (Brief)
Souvenir paperweight from the 1893 World’s Columbian Exposition, held in Chicago Illinois. The Exposition, commemorating the 400th anniversary of Christopher Columbus’s voyage, was the second World’s Fair held in the United States, the first being Philadelphia’s 1876 Centennial Exposition.
The paperweight features an image of the Fair’s most remembered feature, the Ferris Wheel. Designed by George Washington Gage Ferris Jr., the “Chicago Wheel” was as a response to the success of the Eiffel Tower, unveiled at the 1889 Exposition Universelle in Paris.
The wheel stood 264 feet high and featured 36 gondolas, each capable of holding up to 60 riders. An engineering marvel, it became the Fair’s most prominent attraction, and like the Exposition itself, was used to promote civic pride and display American ingenuity.
Object Name
Date made
associated dates
1893 05 01 / 1893 05 01, 1893 10 30 / 1893 10 30
place made
United States: Illinois, Chicago
Physical Description
glass (overall material)
brown (overall color)
yellow (overall color)
white (overall color)
blue (overall color)
average spatial: 1 1/2 in x 3 in; 3.81 cm x 7.62 cm
ID Number
catalog number
accession number
catalog number
Credit Line
The Larry Zim World's Fair Collection
Expositions and Fairs
Expositions and Fairs
World's Columbian Exposition
See more items in
Cultural and Community Life: Entertainment
Data Source
National Museum of American History
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