NP: nd [1876?]. Original pen & ink drawing, 14 x 18 1/2 in., mounted, glazed and framed. The unnamed artist has placed a sketch of a domed building, likely Memorial Hall, designed by Herman Schwarzmann as the art gallery for the exhibition, at the top of the drawing. Uncle Sam and a "visitor" in a short coat shake hands across the dome. The remainder of the sketch consists of caricatures of other visitors, along with a few short captions. In the upper left corner, a group of musicians is playing drums and fifes while a prim young woman smiles in the foreground. The caption reads "Some quaks [sic] and music." In the right corner three "English Cousins" appear on the scene, near a picture of "our little eagle." At the center of the picture are two well dressed young ladies in long skirts and bustles carrying parasols. Below them a group of three Chinese men, all with long pigtails, are sketched. One is having his pigtail pulled hard by an impish young fellow. A group of elfish looking characters are dancing in "a ring" beneath the trees, and several plump picnickers are eating heartily. An accomplished and amusing sketch of the American and international attendees at the first official World's Fair held in the United States. It has the appearance of a professional illustrator. Item #63752
The city of Philadelphia, celebrating one hundred years since the signing of the Declaration of Independence, was the site of the first American World's Fair. The fair was held from May 10 to November 10, 1876, and saw nearly 9 million visitors. Exhibitors included 26 different states, 38 foreign countries, and numerous commercial enterprises including the Singer Sewing Machine Company, and featured introductions of several new products including popcorn, root beer, ketchup, typewriters and telephones.