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World's Fair

The Extraordinary Chicago Interfaith Gathering That Introduced Asian Religions to America

Daniel Hautzinger

The 1893 World's Parliament of Religions that took place during the World's Fair in what is now the Art Institute of Chicago introduced Hinduism, Buddhism, Jainism, and the Baháʼí faith to mainstream America. 

The Influential Plan That Sought to Make Chicago Beautiful

Daniel Hautzinger

The 1909 Plan of Chicago recommended the lakefront be public parkland, extensive parks and forest preserves throughout the city, and other proposals that helped make Chicago the city we know today. 

Frederick Douglass's Defiant Stand at Chicago's World's Fair

Daniel Hautzinger

Although Frederick Douglass did not know his official birth date, he celebrated it on February 14. Late in his life, he spent a year in Chicago serving as the most prominent advocate for African Americans in a World's Fair that largely excluded them.

Dreaming of a World's Fair

Daniel Hautzinger

The Joffrey Ballet's new Nutcracker is set at the 1893 World's Columbian Exposition in Chicago. How was the Joffrey's creative team inspired by the epochal World's Fair, and what aspects of the real-life Fair made it into their new production?

A Break in the Clouds: Chicago's 1933 World's Fair

Daniel Hautzinger

84 years ago today, in the midst of the Great Depression, Chicago opened an extravagant World's Fair. The exposition celebrated "A Century of Progress" in the city and highlighted technological innovations such as the twelve-sided House of Tomorrow, which featured an electric dishwasher and air conditioning, and a Sky Ride that ferried visitors over the entire fair.

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