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Volume 1277
Remarkable Summer of '93

Chicago World's Fair of 1893
Ch. 3: Grand Adventure I
The Columbian Exposition
July 2, 1893 
Notes & Photos
The Adventures of 
Edgar Rice Burroughs
As Interpreted by
Bill Hillman

Ed and Emma's Grand Adventure I

Wagons in Haymarket Square
Wagons in Haymarket Square

I arose early, to help Coleman hitch the team to father's carriage. Father had already gone to work at the factory to supervise the loading of the electric horseless surrey onto the freight wagon. Mindful of the commotion and the runaways caused by the strange vehicle whenever our company president and secretary took it out on the streets, he thought it wiser and safer to transport it to the grounds by wagon. It turned out that this was an especially fortunate decision this morning, as the downtown area was more congested than usual, due to yet another of the Exposition parades. 
State Street North from Madison
State Street North from Madison
Michigan Avenue Parade
Michigan Avenue Parade
Father was also concerned that the batteries all be in good working order so that nothing might go wrong during the demonstration run at the Fair this evening. The factory hands were assigned to transport the automobile to the grounds and father was planning to take the electric streetcar over to the Exposition later in the day. Coleman and I met a number of delays caused by Fair traffic, the most serious was the early morning parade on Michigan Avenue. Our wait for the parade to pass provided a good opportunity for me to experiment with my new camera. 
Taking Admission Photo
................Taking Admission Photos ...............................Ed Burroughs' Exhibitor Pass with Photo
Coleman dropped me off near the main gate where I waited to pick up my exhibitor's pass with the new admission photo I had taken yesterday. While I waited for the processed pass, he carried on across the grounds to the Electricity Building where he would wait for the electric carriage to arrive at the American Battery display. 

After receiving my pass and taking a few minutes to admire the sporty boater straw hat and newly sprouted mustache on the dapper gent in the photograph, I rushed across the grounds, through the Peristyle and ran to the end of the pier in time. I arrived just in time to meet Emma and Jessie, as they disembarked from the steamship. They looked cheerful and refreshed after their two-week stay in the country with the Coleman family. They were bubbling with excitement and expectation over the day's wonders that lay ahead. Already they had experienced the excitement of having seen spectacular sights from the deck of the steamship: the distant splendour of the Exposition, an authentic Viking ship that passed alongside, and a full-scale replica of an iron-clad warship at the North Pier.

View from Lake Michigan
Emma's view of the Fair as she and Jessie approach the dock

Norwegian Viking Ship
Norwegian Viking Ship
Iron Clad Warship Exhibit
Iron Clad Warship Exhibit at the North Pier
Moveable Sidewalk on the Pier
Moveable Sidewalk on the Pier
We paid our nickels and took the moving sidewalk back to the Peristyle, quite an unusual experience. There are two walks, side by side -- the outside one that we first mounted moved slower, then when we got our balance we stepped over to the faster walk.  Jessie, always the prankster with her parasol, "accidentally" caused a few of the more pompous sidewalk riders to lose their balance . . . and hats. We were all caught up in the waves of excitement that ran through the crowd around us as the gleaming domes and pointed towers of the White City and Ferris's mammoth wheel loomed larger during our approach to the Peristyle gate.


When we reached the ticket booth I presented my exhibitor's pass and paid $1.00 for the girls' admission. We had just gone through the gate and I was about to take another photograph, when I was called back to pay another $2.00. The ticket taker had noticed the camera equipment I was carrying and pointed to the photographer rates on the board. 

Soon we were moving along again with the jostling but well-mannered crowd

Surging Sea of Humanity at the Opening
A surging sea of humanity

Excitement grew as we passed through the Peristyle arch to the sound of the Columbian Chorus and Orchestra drifting in from the lakefront.  Looking around, we found ourselves in the awe-inspiring. Court of Honor with its Grand Basin -- a large reflecting pool containing the elaborate MacMonnies Fountain and the immense gilded statue of the Republic. 

At the far end of the Basin presided the spectacular dome of the Administration building -- a structure representative of the Beaux-Arts architectural  theme of the 14 "great" buildings of the Fair. All of these main buildings are covered in the same white staff (stucco), producing a homogenous yet somehow magnificent grouping of buildings.

Court of Honor
Court of Honour 
Approach to the Administration Building
 Approaching the Administration Building
Percheron Horses in the Stock Pavilion
Percheron Horses in the Stock Pavilion
Great Fountain from Machinery Hall
View of the Great Fountain from Machinery Hall
The Exposition grounds exhibit unbelievably clean streets, well-behaved crowds, the most advanced sanitary and transportation systems, and most of all, they are beautiful beyond compare -- so unlike the majority of the gray and dusty Chicago streets we are used to. A touch of the real Chicago was provided, however, as the smell of the Fair's stock pavilions to our left wafted across the Court. 

We quickened our pace, took a final glance back across the Grand Basin, where we could see the vast blue of Lake Michigan beyond the Peristyle, and entered the first of 200 buildings on the grounds: the Machinery Building. This building serves a practical purpose, as it houses the Fair's power plant, with a multitude of steam engines and dynamos providing electricity for the grounds. We walked past many rows of exhibits that included Whitney's cotton gin, the latest sewing machines, and the world's largest conveyor belt.

Machinery BuildingMachineray Building
Machinery Building
Agricultural Building
Agricultural Building Displays
We moved on to the Agricultural Building that contains far more exhibits than we could take in during our casual walk-through: weather stations, farm building models, animals, machines, tools, the Schlitz Brewery booth, a Canadian "Monster Cheese," ostriches from the Cape Colony, a 1,500 pound chocolate Venus de Milo and hundreds of tobacco exhibits. Since the main purpose of the building is to promote agriculture the designers came up with clever oddities, such as a map of the United States made entirely of pickles and  two Liberty Bell models -- one made of grains and one of oranges. Caught up in agrarian excitement I promised Emma that one day we would have a modern farm of our own and raise many of the crops and animals showcased here.

Exhausted by the immensity of the first two display buildings and their sheer number of exhibits, we stepped back out into the Court of Honor. The girls found a bench, suggesting it was time for a rest and mid-morning snack, while it fell upon me to hunt for sustenance among the bewildering array of food offered by the many lunch concessionaires. Fascinated by the exotic fare, I returned loaded down with a bewildering assortment of culinary delights. It took us awhile to get used to the strange new fare. 

We washed down our hot hamburger sandwiches (actually fried ground beef served in a bun), with a bottled sweet drink containing gas bubbles that fizzed up into our noses. Before we rejoined the jostling masses I passed around a box of Cracker Jack -- a delicious mix of popcorn and nuts, all covered with sticky caramel candy.

Manufacture and Liberal Arts Building ~ Colorization by ChicagologyManufactures and Liberal Arts
Manufactures and Liberal Arts Building
The Manufactures and Liberal Arts building cover over 11 acres of exhibits from all around the world. Contained in this immense structure is the most eclectic of exhibits, combining goods for sale with items of historical and artistic interest. Sale goods such as Remington typewriters, Tiffany stained glass, clothes, phonographs, furniture are all laid out side by side with exhibits such as Bach's clavichord, Mozart's spinet, royal furniture from a Bavarian palace, and the manuscript of Lincoln's Inaugural Address. 

View from the Manufactures and Liberal Arts Building ~ Colorized by Chicagology
View of the Fair Grounds from the Balcony

Most thrilling of all, however, is the University of Chicago's 70-ton Yerkes telescope -- the world's largest! An intriguing viewing schedule is posted beside the exhibit. I'm looking forward to making many nocturnal visits over the coming weeks to view the craters of the Moon, the canals of Mars, the luxurious clouds of Venus and the depths of the Universe beyond the farthest star.

Largest Telescope in the World, Liberal Arts Building
Largest Telescope in the World, Liberal Arts Building

U. S. Government Building
North of Court of Honor we entered the U.S. Government building, a much smaller structure containing displays by all branches of the government, including the War, State, Treasury, Interior, Justice, Agriculture, and Post Office departments. 

To commemorate the Fair, the Post Office offers a new way of sending postal messages: a Postal Card. It is a letter-sized card with a photograph and a place for a short message on one side while the other side is reserved for an address and stamp.

The exhibits we found most impressive were those on George Washington, carrier pigeons, international currency, and a huge California redwood tree. It seems that everywhere we go on these grounds we are intrigued by impressive and unusual exhibits from the state of California. This sunny land by the Pacific must be a marvelous place to live -- especially in the winter months -- such contrast to our harsh Chicago winters.

Fishery Building
Fisheries Exhibit in the U.S. Government Building
Fisheries Building
Entering the Fisheries Building we were impressed by the double row of floor-to-ceiling aquaria, filled with hundreds of species of fresh and salt water fish. It was almost like walking on the sea bottom -- even more full of natural wonders than those described in the far-fetched adventures of that French fantasy writer, Jules Verne in his book, 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea. Gazing out the many windows of the building, we had the feeling we were on an island, with a lagoon to the west and Lake Michigan to the east.
Palace of Fine Arts now Chicago's Museum of Science and Industry
The Palace of Fine Arts
The Palace of Fine Arts on the shores of North Pond, surrounded by the scores of foreign and state buildings, is a 140-room structure with thousands of exhibits. Inside we saw many of the world's artistic masterpieces. Awards have been given for artistic accomplishment in fields such as painting, sculpture, decorative arts, and drawing and etching. The girls seemed most impressed by the display of miniatures, which includes whole villages, as well as doll houses filled with tiny pieces of furniture and even libraries stocked with actual miniature books.

A favourite theme throughout the building is the nude form -- an interest long held by myself. Since I have done doodles, sketches and cartoons for as many years as I can remember -- and my sketches are much in demand at the Academy for our Military Mirror and Adjutant publications -- I hope someday to take some formal instruction. If it hadn't been for this year's Exposition I think I could have talked mother into allowing me to take a summer course at the Chicago Art Institute. It's hard to believe that the splendid buildings of the White City, such as this Arts Palace, were designed to be demolished after the Fair has its run -- this magnificent structure makes such a fitting home of the arts -- both as a showcase and as a place of instruction.

Looking about at the perspiring throngs of fairgoers I couldn't help but notice how impractical were the heavy coats and trousers of the men and the many-layered skirts and dresses of the women. We felt overdressed, even in our light summer clothing -- me in my light cotton three-piece and the girls in their frilly summer dresses. The ever-daring Jessie shocked a few of the more serious art lovers by occasionally hiking up and twirling her skirts when the heat became unbearable. Of all the Hulbert sisters, though, I must admit that she has the most comely ankles.

Edgar Rice Burroughs' 
Remarkable Summer of '93
Chapter 4: The Magic City
White City Wonders
An Illustrated Docu-Fiction Series by Bill Hillman
See Exposition Exhibits
Stereoviews Album No. 3
ERBzine 1277s
Remarkable Summer of '93
A Docu-Novel by Bill Hillman
Ch. I: Welcome to Chicago's
Columbian Exposition
Ch. 2: Invasion of the 
Boys from Orchard Lake
Ch. 3: Grand Adventure
Strange New Worlds
Ch. 4: Magic City
The White City
StereoViews: Chicago
StereoViews: Buildings
StereoViews: Exhibits I
StereoViews: Exhibits II
Ch. 5: Midway Adventure I
The Great Wheel
Ch. 6: Midway Adventure II
Exotic Lands
Ch. 7: Master Mind of 
The World of Tomorrow
Ch. 8
Ed and His Electric Flyer
StereoViews: Midway
StereoViews: Peep Shows
StereoViews: Ed's Tour I
StereoViews: Ed's Tour II
. .
Ch. 9
Complete All-Text Version
Ch. 10
Sister Jessie's Notebook
Ch. 11
Web Refs & Appendix
PART II: Time Shift Adventure
Back to ERB's Tarzana Ranch
StereoViews: Ed's Tour
StereoViews from ERB Library
Souvenirs | Tours: IV | V | VI
Back To Tarzana: All Text

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