The History of World Expositions

The Saint Louis World Exposition 1904
"Farewell, a long farewell, to all thy splendor"


Year: 1904
City: St. Louis
Country: USA
Duration: 30th April - 1st December 1904
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Copyright: Schm├╝lling 1904
Review

On the last day of the exposition, 1 December 1904, Francis concluded his farewell speech with the words "Farewell, a long farewell, to all thy splendor". A band started to play "Auld Lang Syne" before the celebrations finally ended with a display of fireworks. Although neither the idea behind the exposition nor its architectural design had originated from innovative approaches, people in America were unanimous in declaring it a success. In seven months, the world's biggest exposition so far had attracted almost 20 million visitors.
In order to give the exhibitors time for the return transport of their exhibits, all buildings remained in place until the spring of 1905. Only then were the entire building materials, the decoration items and the furniture supposed to be sold to the Chicago Wrecking Company for 450,000 dollars and the demolition work started. The efforts of an association which was pressing for a trade museum with the exhibits to be set up in the rooms of the German House failed. This was not only due to the expense of converting the interior, but also because the German Commissioner of the Reich said that he was not prepared to make the house's valuable interior decoration available free of charge. Apart from this, the directors of the exposition had undertaken to return the park to the municipal authority without any buildings on it, apart from the art palace and the aviaries. The park, which had once been in its natural state and was now cultivated, was to be open to the public for recreation with golf courses and tennis courts, picnic areas, an art museum and a zoo. Some of the profits from the exhibition were to be used to build two monuments: a pavilion with a bronze statue of King Ludwig IX and the Jefferson monument which had been selected as a place to store the reports on the exposition and the collections of the Missouri Historical Society.



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