Encyclopedia ofChicago
Historical Source
Historical Source
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Ferris Wheel, World's Columbian Exposition, 1893

 

 

 

Ferris Wheel, World's Columbian Exposition, 1893

The world's first Ferris Wheel was erected at the center of the Midway. Built on speculation by George W. Ferris, a bridge builder from Pittsburgh, the ride was the fair's most prominent engineering marvel. The wheel rose to 264 feet, surpassing the Eiffel Tower, and offering breathtaking views of the fair and the city. This lithograph, based on a watercolor painting by H. D. Nichols, is from a portfolio of prints that accompanied a deluxe edition of Hubert Howe Bancroft's The Book of the Fair.