Title: Prelude to a Century: The 1904 St. Louis World’s Fair
Author: Patrick Murphy
Size: 11 x 9
No single event in the history of St. Louis shines as brightly as the 1904 World’s Fair. Forest Park was transformed into a magnificent Ivory City of immense palaces and dramatic vistas. Cascades and fountains splashed and bubbled. Giant engines hummed, powering a million electric lights. Twenty million visitors passed through its gates to witness wonderous displays of the technological achievements of humankind.
In this spectacular volume, Patrick Murphy takes us beyond the sights and sounds of the Fair into the minds of those who were there. His stories are those of a generation standing on the brink of a new century, with a sense of wonder and optimism. Murphy helps us appreciate how the Fair was a product of its time both in noble aspirations and base prejudices. Exhibits featuring flying machines, automobiles, enormous turbines, and wireless telegraphy stood beside “villages” displaying indigenous people as if they were in a zoo.
Murphy’s storytelling takes us to the heart of the Fair, amid its sights, sounds, and smells. We’re part of the crowd. If the past is a different country, Prelude to a Century is the perfect traveler’s guide to a monumental event that continues to resonate with history lovers.