1 The World's Columbian Exposition of 1893, also known as the Chicago World's Fair, was held to commemorate the four-hundredth anniversary of Christopher Columbus's arrival in the Americas. As plans for the event formed, major cities across the nation leaped at the chance to host the fair. After all, the exposition was an opportunity to represent America at its finest. The winning city would be given that honor.
2 In 1890, Chicago was chosen. That gave the directors and planners only two years to develop and complete one of the most massive undertakings to date. The directors had a clear vision for the exposition. They wanted to present America as a unified country, a leader in technology and business, and a lover of knowledge and amusement. The development, architecture, and exhibitions of the fair would serve to reflect these ideals, as well as the tremendous changes that were occurring in the late 1800s.
Development and Design 3 As it turned out, the construction was too much to complete in two years. Though the opening ceremonies took place in 1892, the fair did not begin until the spring of 1893. Its doors were opened May 1 and closed on October 30 of that same year. When complete, the fairgrounds housed over 200 buildings on more than 630 acres of land.
4 Landscape architect Frederick Law Olmstead was chosen to design the layout of the fairgrounds. Famed for his design of New York's Central Park, Olmstead was a perfect candidate for the job. As he worked on the layout of the fairgrounds, lead architect Daniel H. Burnham worked with a team of well-known colleagues to design the buildings. A clear indication of the changing times was that the first female architectural graduate from Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Sophia Hayden, was chosen to design the Woman's Building.
5 The planners were faced with a choice of style for the main buildings. Would they adopt a modern style to reflect the eclectic1 conglomeration of the fair? Or would they opt for a traditional style that suggested the American connection to European tradition? Ultimately, the planners chose to build in the traditional European Beaux-Arts style, which favored grand entrances and ornate exteriors. However, not all of the buildings had to feature this style. The buildings sponsored by states, territories, and foreign countries could be built however the sponsors liked. Just like America itself, the architecture was a combination of old and new.
Construction 6 Most of the buildings featured steel and brick skeletons. However, the walls were made of a stucco-like substance called staff. The designs were intricate, but the building material was not meant to last. (In fact, the only building that remains today is the Palace of Fine Arts, which was stripped of the staff and replaced by stone. Currently, the building houses the Museum of Science and Industry.) In contrast, the interior spaces of buildings were not complex at all. The insides of most of the buildings were high-ceilinged wide-open spaces. Several of the buildings spanned over 400,000 square feet, about the size of seven football fields. These large, open spaces reflected the landscape of the ever-expanding America.
Exhibitions 7 The layout of the fairgrounds and the construction of the buildings were just the tip of the iceberg. The massive spaces inside the buildings were to be filled with exhibits. Before buildings were constructed, exhibits were being developed. Their creation and installation was another huge undertaking that proved America had moved into an age of industrial and technological advancement.
8 Each building had a theme. Agriculture, U.S. Government, Machinery, the Woman's Building, and Electricity were just a few of the most prominent themed buildings. Connected by the Midway and courts and parks, each building was packed with exhibits, some educational and some amusing. For example, the Agriculture building featured a block of cheese that weighed eleven tons, as well as academic presentations on progressive farming technology of the period.
9 The Electricity Building was, not surprisingly, very popular. Electricity was a relatively new technology. It had only been available in a few select homes for just over a decade. Not only was the whole fairground lit at night with electric bulbs, but the Electricity Building included a display of a variety of cutting-edge gadgets for the home, such as fans and kitchen appliances. The building also presented the impressive telephone and the first iteration of a movie projector. Perhaps the most labor-intensive exhibition in that building was the Tower of Light. It reached 82 feet and featured nearly 20,000 prisms of cut glass reflecting the light of an enormous bulb. The tower stood as a beacon, lighting the future of a modern America.
Implications 10 Of course, the directors, designers, architects, contributors, and sponsors all had an agenda for putting the time, the effort, and the money into the fair. The fair was an anniversary celebration of Columbus's arrival, but even more so a celebration of the changing nature of life in America. It was a business venture, too, and a profitable one. The combination of education, innovation, and amusement drew a record crowd of almost 26 million people, most of whom paid 50 cents to enter and spent more while there. Each of those people would leave with an idea of what America would be in the future; lighted by electricity, run by machinery, and offering entertainment for all.
1 eclectic: made of things from a variety of sources or styles
Which quotation supports the idea that the people who visited the exposition, left with a better notion of what America would look like in the future?
"The massive spaces inside the buildings were to be filled with exhibits."
"The combination of amusement drew 26 million people, most of whom paid money to enter and spent more while there."
"Designs were intricate, but the building material was not meant to last."
"Just like America itself, the architecture was a combination of old and new."
Select two phrases from the passage that support the idea that exhibits were educational and amusing.
"...academic presentations on progressive farming technology of the period."
"...spanned over 400,000 square feet, about the size of seven football fields."
"...Sophia Hayden, was chosen to design the Woman's Building."
"...featured a block of cheese that weighed eleven tons."
Based on the passage, how did the author feel about the exposition that commemorated the anniversary of Christopher Columbus's arrival in the Americas?
He felt the anniversary was more of a celebration and business venture of the changing nature of life in America.
He felt the development and design of the exposition would take two years in order to be a success.
He felt Frederick Law Olmstead should have been chosen to host and represent America at its finest.
He felt the anniversary was a great opportunity for cities across the nation to be involved in and attend.
Which detail from the text supports America's expansion in landscaping?
Most buildings were made of steel and brick skeletons.
Interior spaces of buildings were not complex at all.
A lot of buildings span over the size of seven football fields.
The Palace of Fine Arts was not meant to last.
Which detail from the text supports the idea that the Electricity Building was very popular?
Academic presentations on progressive farming technology was featured.
The Tower of Light stood as beacon, lighting the future of a modern America.
The Electricity Building was a very unique theme with modern technology available to most homes.
The Electricity Building proved America had moved into an age of industrial and technological advancement.
Which is the best one-sentence summary of the section titled "Construction"?
The construction of the buildings was quick and simple because no time could be wasted.
The ornate buildings, made of steel and staff, featured wide-open interior spaces.
The only building from the fair that has survived to date is the Palace of Fine Arts.
9th Grade Social Science Mini-Assessment RI.1.1 and RI.1.2 Passage 1
Directions: Read the following passage. Then answer the questions that follow.
from Fireside Chat: On the European War (September 3, 1939)
by Franklin D. Roosevelt
1 My fellow Americans and my friends:
2 Tonight my single duty is to speak to the whole of America.
3 Until four-thirty this morning I had hoped against hope that some miracle would prevent a devastating war in Europe and bring to an end the invasion of Poland by Germany.
4 For four long years a succession of actual wars and constant crises have shaken the entire world and have threatened in each case to bring on the gigantic conflict which is today unhappily a fact.
5 It is right that I should recall to your minds the consistent and at times successful efforts of your Government in these crises to throw the full weight of the United States into the cause of peace. In spite of spreading wars I think that we have every right and every reason to maintain as a national policy the fundamental moralities, the teachings of religion and the continuation of efforts to restore peace—for some day, though the time may be distant, we can be of even greater help to a crippled humanity.
6 It is right, too, to point out that the unfortunate events of these recent years have, without question, been based on the use of force and the threat of force. And it seems to me clear, even at the outbreak of this great war, that the influence of America should be consistent in seeking for humanity a final peace which will eliminate, as far as it is possible to do so, the continued use of force between nations.
7 It is, of course, impossible to predict the future. I have my constant stream of information from American representatives and other sources throughout the world. You, the people of this country, are receiving news through your radios and your newspapers at every hour of the day.
8 You are, I believe, the most enlightened and the best-informed people in all the world at this moment. You are subjected to no censorship of news, and I want to add that your Government has no information which it withholds or which it has any thought of withholding from you.
9 At the same time, as I told my press conference on Friday, it is of the highest importance that the press and the radio use the utmost caution to discriminate between actual verified fact on the one hand and mere rumor on the other.
10 I can add to that by saying that I hope the people of this country will also discriminate most carefully between news and rumor. Do not believe of necessity everything you hear or read. Check up on it first.
11 You must master at the outset a simple but unalterable1 fact in modern foreign relations between nations. When peace has been broken anywhere, the peace of all countries everywhere is in danger.
12 It is easy for you and for me to shrug our shoulders and to say that conflicts taking place thousands of miles from the continental United States, and, indeed, thousands of miles from the whole American Hemisphere, do not seriously affect the Americas—and that all the United States has to do is to ignore them and go about its own business. Passionately though we may desire detachment, we are forced to realize that every word that comes through the air, every ship that sails the sea, every battle that is fought, does affect the American future.…
13 It is of the utmost importance that the people of this country, with the best information in the world, think things through. The most dangerous enemies of American peace are those who, without well-rounded information on the whole broad subject of the past, the present and the future, undertake to speak with assumed authority, to talk in terms of glittering generalities, to give to the nation assurances or prophecies2 which are of little present or future value.…
14 This nation will remain a neutral nation, but I cannot ask that every American remain neutral in thought as well. Even a neutral has a right to take account of facts. Even a neutral cannot be asked to close his mind or his conscience.
15 I have said not once, but many times, that I have seen war and that I hate war. I say that again and again.
16 I hope the United States will keep out of this war. I believe that it will. And I give you assurance and reassurance that every effort of your Government will be directed toward that end.
17 As long as it remains within my power to prevent, there will be no blackout of peace in the United States.
1 unalterable: impossible to change
2 prophecies: predictions of the future
What is the central idea in paragraph 12?
As convenient as it is to neglect a war that has nothing to do with the United States, Americans should notice the effects it may have on them at a later time.
It is better to remain well-rounded with information about a war so the people of the United States can outline a well thought-out plan at a later time.
The United States will remain a neutral nation whether Americans choose to be open or close-minded.
Franklin D. Roosevelt believes that the war in Europe will spark other conflicts at a later time, but hopes that it does not.
What is the central idea of the passage?
A devastating war broke out in Europe and although Franklin D. Roosevelt cannot ask that every American remain open-minded, he hopes the United States will keep out of it.
President D. Roosevelt speaks to every American about the importance of carefully reading into the news and rumors spreading about the European war.
President D. Roosevelt speaks to every American about avoiding conflicts taking place miles from the continental United States that doesn't harm Americans.
A devastating war broke out in the United States and although Franklin D. Roosevelt cannot ask that every American remain open-minded, he hopes the Europeans will keep out of it.
What is the central idea of paragraph 8?
Franklin D. Roosevelt has not updated his fellow Americans with the most recent news.
Franklin D. Roosevelt has updated his fellow Americans with the most recent news.
Franklin D. Roosevelt may have the government withholding information from the American people.
Franklin D. Roosevelt does not have the government withholding information from the American people, but might have to in the future.
How do the words assurance and reassurance refine the central idea of the passage? Select two answer choices.
A) To reveal the passion Roosevelt has about peace over war.
B) To reveal the panic Roosevelt has about peace over war.
C) To reveal the desire for movement Roosevelt has about peace over war.
D) To reveal the passion Roosevelt has about war over peace.
E) To reveal the desire for movement Roosevelt has about war over peace.
Read this phrase from the text:
When peace has broken anywhere, the peace of all countries everywhere is in danger.
How does this phrase affect the central idea of the text?
By highlighting that the only way to seek American involvement in major wars is to allow new conflicts throughout the world.
By highlighting that only the victories of peace leave no ruined countries.
By highlighting that the only way to avoid American involvement in major wars is to prevent new conflicts throughout the world.
By highlighting the importance of war in some countries in order to evolve and progress in the world we live in today.
Which paragraph from the text supports how President Franklin D. Roosevelt feels about the European War?
Which piece of text evidence helps you infer that Roosevelt was announcing that war in Europe had officially begun?
Until four-thirty this morning I had hoped against hope that some miracle would prevent a devastating war in Europe and bring to an end the invasion of Poland by Germany.
I have my constant stream of information from American representatives and other sources throughout the world.
It is right that I should recall to your minds the consistent and at time successful efforts of your Government in these crises to throw the full weight of the United States into the cause of peace.
Tonight my single duty is to speak to the whole of America.
What can you infer about Roosevelt's position on the future of the war based on the last sentence of the speech?
He could not guarantee that the United States would stay out of the war forever.
He believed that the war in Europe would spark other conflicts around the world.
He expected the conflict to be over quickly.
He assumed that other countries would join the United States in declaring
Directions: Write two or three sentences to respond to the questions about the passage.
Select evidence from the article that supports the idea that President Roosevelt believes that the United States will stay out of the war. Select evidence from the article that contradicts this.