1904 World's Fair Society

Brief History of The Worlds Fair Society

Preserving the Memory and Memoribilia for The Louisiana Purchase Exposition.
Louisiana Purchase Exposition

In April 1986, a handful of people got together, under the leadership of founder Max Storm, to discuss the formation of a society with a mission dedicated to “preserving the memory and memorabilia of the Louisiana Purchase Exposition”. On April 30, the 82nd anniversary of the opening day of the Fair, we held our first official membership meeting. We started small, but we were a determined bunch … now our membership has grown to over 300. We are a diverse group of people that meet every month in St. Louis, Missouri. Some of us collect memorabilia … some of us are interested in digging up the facts and setting the record straight … some of us are interested in finding the bits and pieces of the fair that still exist … some of us have family connections to the fair … and some of us just find it interesting. The Society has published a video documentary of Fair attendees, printed a book, discovered and purchased the masterworks to the 1904 Fair’s Floral Clock (which is currently on display at the Missouri History Museum), produced several post cards, minted a commemorative silver medal for the Fair’s centennial, and made a large donation to the renovation of the St. Louis Zoo’s Bird Cage, originally built for the 1904 World’s Fair. Members receive the monthly mailing of the newsletter, “The World’s Fair Bulletin”. A sample of several pages of the The World’s Fair Bulletin” bulletin can be seen by clicking on the link “The Worlds Fair Bulletin” . Each issue contains articles of World’s Fair interest and information on upcoming meetings and events. Members are encouraged to send letters, questions, and articles related to the Fair. Please consider joining the Society. Our monthly meetings feature programs covering a wide range of Fair-related topics, such as music, food, fashions, exhibits, memorabilia displays, and even 3-D slide shows. Visitors are always welcome at our monthly meetings. Every December 1st, we have a formal Closing Day Observance Banquet to commemorate the closing day of the Fair. In 1904, St. Louis recognized the importance of the Louisiana Purchase Treaty to the history of the United States by inviting the country and the world to participate in the “greatest of expositions”. The 1904 World’s Fair Society wants to keep the memories alive. We hope you explore the various links provided herein and explore the wonders of the 1904 World’s Fair.


Upcoming events - all are welcome
October 7, 2018
  • Dedication of David R. Francis Statue in Francis Park

    October 7, 2018 @ 1:00 pm - 2:00 pm

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October 10, 2018
  • The Fair That Wasn't

    October 10, 2018 @ 6:30 pm - 8:30 pm
    Missouri History Museum, 5700 Lindell Blvd, St. Louis, MO 63112, USA

    The early planners of the 1904 World's Fair wanted a Fair to surpass all previous World's Fairs, including gigantic and never-before-accomplished structures. World's Fair Society President Mike Truax will present many of the early plans and visions for the Fair that were never consummated.
    You will see the several proposed Fair locations and layouts, a few exotic proposed structures, and many building plans and designs that changed. But when built, they all contributed to the final grandeur of our favorite World's Fair.
    In the 1980s, Carl Ebert authored a booklet with this same title. Mike will expand on this history to show you a aspects of the Fair that didn't happen. MHM will host this meeting, and we hope that many non-members will come to learn about this “different perspective” of the Fair.

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November 8, 2018
  • Laura Merritt Journal- Part 3

    November 8, 2018 @ 6:30 pm - 8:30 pm
    Aberdeen Heights, 575 Couch Ave, Kirkwood, MO 63122, USA

    Karl and Margie Kindt will present the conclusion (Part 3) of this amazing historical record.
    Though young and schooled only through eighth grade, Laura Merritt was a bright and talented writer She kept good records of what she saw each day at the Fair. We'll finish revisiting Laura's “Journey to the Fair”, and learn about what happened to her after she returned to Iowa.
    With a whole month to explore the Fair, Laura’s journal gives a wonderfully full and comprehensive rendering of the experience. Rare images from the Public Library and History Museum's glass slide collections will provide incredible insight into her visit, complementing her extensive diary.
    Because she enjoyed so many days at the Fair, there is hardly an aspect of the Fair that Laura did not describe. And because the Merritts were a farm family with modest means who no doubt sacrificed to make the trip, Laura was determined to make the most of every day and squeeze the fullest experience into every moment. An astute, careful eyewitness to history, she thrived on interacting and dialogue with others, especially the foreigners in the booths.

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December 1, 2018

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