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Category: World’s Fair materials

New “World’s Fairs” Collection in our Digital Library

Explore one of our newest collections in our digital library containing books, catalogs and ephemera from 19th and 20th century World’s Fairs and Expositions. The majority of the items in this collection were digitized by an outside vendor as part of a special project. Pieces in this collection date from the mid 1800’s to the early 1900’s, highlighting experiences from different fairs that took place all over the world, from America to Europe and more. Many of these pieces contain wonderful images and illustrations of the actual fairs, giving us a look into our world’s history. Here you can find and learn more detailed information about fairs like the The Great Exhibition, which was showcased in the Crystal Palace in London, England, and the Exposition Universelle in Paris, France. Below are a few pieces from the collection to give you an idea about what you can find in our new addition to our digital library. Most items are from the Dibner Library of the History of Science and Technology and the Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Library.

One intern’s trip around the World’s Fairs

–This post was written by Jenna Fattah, a Summer 2017 intern at the American Art & Portrait Gallery Library. She is a junior at Indiana University Bloomington studying History. She hopes to continue on to get her Masters in Library Science. Interested in interning with Smithsonian Libraries? Check out our internship opportunities for Spring 2018.

AAPG World's Fair book spines
AAPG World’s Fair book spines

As an American Art & Portrait Gallery Library intern, I was lucky to spend my summer surrounded by books, art, and bibliophiles. My largest project took me about two months to complete, but it was well worth it. When you type “World’s Fair” into the Smithsonian Library’s catalog, SIRIS, almost 1,600 items come up. Of those, almost 1,200 are original artifacts published for or by the sponsors or committees of the different World’s Fairs.

Adopt “Souvenir views of the Panama-Pacific International Exposition”

2015 marks the 100th anniversary of the Panama–Pacific International Exposition, held in San Francisco, between February 20 and December 4 in 1915. Its ostensible purpose was to celebrate the completion of the Panama Canal, but it was widely seen in the city as an opportunity to showcase its recovery from the 1906 earthquake. The fair was constructed on a 635 acre (2.6 km2) site in San Francisco, along the northern shore now known as the Marina District.

Research Opportunities 2015-2016

The Smithsonian Libraries, situated at the center of the world’s largest museum complex, is a vital part of the research, exhibition, and educational enterprise of the Institution. The Libraries offers exceptional research resources ranging from 13th-century manuscripts to electronic journals. We are happy to offer the following fellowship opportunities for 2015-2016.