A Century of Progress Memorabilia collection, 1933-1999
- TitleA Century of Progress memorabilia collection MSCOPM80
- PublisherSpecial Collections
- RepositorySpecial Collections
- Physical Description8.0 Linear feet
- AbstractA Century of Progress International Exposition was held in Chicago during the summers of 1933 and 1934 to commemorate the 100th year anniversary of the incorporation of the city of Chicago in 1833. The A Century of Progress Memoribilia collection includes printed materials such as pamphlets, brochures, newspaper clippings, and maps (Series I); photographs and prints (Series II); as well as souvenirs such as postcards, bracelets, can banks, and matchboxes (Series III) Subjects covered are science and industry, travel and transportation, home and industrial arts, food and nutrition, pageants and fairs, and prehistoric animals. The materials that comprise this collection originated as a series of donations of small collections all relating to the Century of Progress International Exposition.
A Century of Progress International Exposition was held in Chicago during the summers of 1933 and 1934 to commemorate the 100th year anniversary of the incorporation of the city of Chicago in 1833. Sponsors of the fair sought to broaden its appeal by adopting a theme of universal significance - the spectacular advances of science and technology during the period 1833-1933. Chicago, according to fair boosters, was "the only city of major importance whose entire life had passed within this remarkable century, in which the application of science to industry had brought profound changes in both the economic and cultural structure." The exposition was to serve as a dramatization of the progress of civilization during the hundred years of Chicago's existence.
The exposition was held on 424 acres of land along the shore of Lake Michigan. This land was converted into a magnificent fairground with bright colored buildings that housed a “multitude of entertainment.” The Exposition included numerous exhibits, attractions, restaurants, food stands and an amusement park. It provided corporations and countries the opportunity to display their wares during the Great Depression, a time of great economic crisis.
Related materials can be found in the Century of Progress records also located at the Special Collections and University Archives Department of the University of Illinois at Chicago ( http://library.uic.edu/home/collections/manuscripts-and-rare-books/finding-aids#C). Selected images from the Century of Progress records have been digitized and can be accessed on the CARLI Digital Collections website ( http://collections.carli.illinois.edu/index.php). Additionally, researchers may want to consult collections of A Century of Progress materials at the University of Chicago Special Collections Research Center, the Chicago History Museum, and the Newberry Library.
The collection was assembled from thirty-eight accessions received between 1980 and 2010. The majority of the collection is from Grant Schmalgemeir who donated materials on June 6, 1989 and Phillip George Rettig who donated materials December 21, 2004. Numbers denoting individual accessions are recorded on each item in the collection.
The collection is arranged in the following series: Series I: Printed Materials, 1933-1999, consists of pamphlets, brochures, programs, newspaper clippings, magazine and journal articles, and maps. Series II: Photographs and Prints, 1933-1934, consists of photographs and prints. Series III: Souvenirs, 1933-1934, consists of postcards, admission tickets, bracelets, can banks, medals, pressed pennies, playing cards, needle sets, matchboxes, spoon, key, treasure chest, ashtray, and other commemorative items.
This collection of materials comprises several donations of memorabilia from the Century of Progress made to the Special Collections Department of the University of Illinois at Chicago. The collection consists of 5.0 linear feet and spans the years 1933-2007 with the bulk of the materials originating from 1933 and 1934. The collection is organized by format. The formats include printed materials such as pamphlets, brochures, newspaper clippings, and maps (Series I); photographs and prints (Series II); as well as souvenirs such as postcards, bracelets, can banks, and matchboxes (Series III). Subjects covered are science and industry, travel and transportation, home and industrial arts, food and nutrition, pageants and fairs, and prehistoric animals.
A Century of Progress memorabilia collection, Special Collections and University Archives, University of Illinois at Chicago
- NamesCentury of Progress International Exposition (1933-1934 : Chicago, Ill.). -- History-Sources
- Exhibition buildings.
- Home economics.
- Industrial arts.
- Science and industry.
- Geographic CoverageIllinois--Chicago.