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.

Commemorative plate from the New York World's Fair, 1939
Exposition Nationale Suisse Berne 1914
Design for an entrance card, Meubelen 7 t/m 16 Sept. 1948 Jaarbeurs Utrecht [Furniture 7 to 16 Sept. 1948 Industrial Fair Utrecht]
Souvenir tray from Alaska-Yukon-Pacific Exposition, Seattle
Souvenir mirror from the Jamestown Exposition 1607-1907
Bouwmaterialen, Jaarbeurs Utrecht, 3-12 April 1951 [Building Materials, Industrial Fair Utrecht, 3-12 April 1951]
Design for promotional materials for the 1939 Golden Gate International Exposition, San Francisco
Souvenir tray from the New York World's Fair, 1939
Exposition Generale Polonaise Section de l'Art [Polish General Exposition Section of Art]
Esposizione D'Arte Ungherese Genova Palazzo Rosso [Exhibition of Hungarian Art Genoa Palazzo Rosso]
Goblet: Embassy 4900 Line
Radio Televisie [Radio Television]
Enschede Zevenmijls Electriciteitstentoonstelling [Enschede Seven Mile Electricity Exhibition]
Mostra Cinematografica della Biennale Venezia 1936 AN. XIV [Film Show of the Biennale Venice 1936 Year XIV]
Pedestal dish from the Chicago World's Fair