Century of Progress - Chicago World's Fair Collection

Collection Overview

Title: Century of Progress - Chicago World's Fair Collection

Record Series: MsC-92

Record Group:


Creator: Mortenson, Mark

Date: 1933

Extent: 1 box (0.42 linear feet)

Repository: Special Collections & University Archives at Rod Library, University of Northern Iowa

Language: Materials entirely in English.

Information for Users

Accessing the Collection:

No restrictions. Materials are open for research.

Sensitive Materials Statement: Manuscript collections and archival records may contain materials with sensitive or confidential information that is protected under federal or state right to privacy or similar laws, and the Iowa Open Records Law (see Iowa Code § 22.7). Researchers are advised that the disclosure of certain information pertaining to identifiable living individuals represented in this collection without the consent of those individuals may have legal ramifications (e.g., a cause of action under common law for invasion of privacy may arise if facts concerning an individual's private life are published that would be deemed highly offensive to a reasonable person) for which the University of Northern Iowa assumes no responsibility.

Preferred Citation: [Identification of item], in the [Series Title] #[series number], [folder number or title when applicable], [Collection Name], Rod Library, University of Northern Iowa.

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Historical Note

The Century of Progress World's Fair was held in Chicago in 1933 and 1934, with around 40 million people visiting over the course of two years. Held during the Great Depression, the Century of Progress represented a "hopeful vision" for the future by emphasizing "...the message that collaboration among science, industry and government would make a better world."

The fairgrounds were in Burnham Park and on Northerly Island, extending south alongside Lake Michigan. They featured Art Deco architecture as well as a 210 foot high Sky Ride, which carried fairgoers from one end of the fair to the other.

Scope and Content

This collection contains pamphlets, souvenirs, and other ephemera from the fair. Included are postcards featuring the city of Chicago and Fair scenes; a comprehensive map of the fairgrounds; booklets and pamphlets concerning various exhibits, products, and countries represented at the fair, such as Japan, Morocco, Jello-O, the Gilbreth Management Desk, anti-freeze, and more. Also included are a few objects such as pins, pressed pennies, and a promotional figurine.


Box 1

  • Folder 1: Ephemera
  • Folder 2: Ephemera
  • Folder 3:
    • Figurine
    • Pennies
    • Pins


Processing Information

Collection processed and finding aid written by Tessa Wakefield, June 2019.