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.

Souvenir parasol from A Century of Progress, Chicago
Souvenir cane from A Century of Progress, Chicago
ELNIJTO 5-14 Juli Electriciteits En Nijverheids Tentoonstelling Nijmegen [ELNIJTO 5-14 July Electricity and Industry Exhibition Nijmegen]
Jaarbeurs Utrecht [Industrial Fair Utrecht]
Tentoonstelling de Vrouw 1813-1913, Mei-Oct 1913 [Exhibition The Woman 1813-1913, May-Oct 1913]
San Francisco World's Fair
Souvenir pen tray from the Saint Louis World's Fair
Design for promotional materials for the 1939 Golden Gate International Exposition, San Francisco
Birds Eye View of the Centennial Buildings and Grounds
Wembley Empire Exhibition: Palace of Industry
G.A.M.I.T. - 1934 Alkmaar Harmonie En Doelenveld [G.A.M.I.T. - 1934 Alkmaar Harmonie and Doelenveld]
Arbeidsbeurs Utrecht [Labour Exchange Utrecht]
Wineglass: Embassy 4900 Line
Autonomous Organization of the Sample Fair of Tripoli
Vase: Monart, similar to shape HG