Monday, March 23, 2009


Most of the expos I've mentioned here have left evidence (through photos or writing) that their gondolas were a big deal. But it seems that the gondolas at the 1898 expo in Omaha, Nebraska were not so much "in the spotlight" as they were "business as usual".

It's my suspicion that these were gondolas that had been featured in Chicago five years earlier at the World's Columbia Exposition.

Omaha's expo was known as the "Trans Mississippi International Exposition". Running from June through November, this was an expo with something to prove. The U.S. had seen some financial hard times in 1893, and the organizers of this event hoped to show the world that things were looking up, and in so doing, improve the local economy. I'm not sure if the world got the message, but by bringing in more than two and a half million visitors, they probably succeeded at boosting the area economy.

Some of the gondolas in Omaha were painted other colors, while the rest remained their original black.
Most of the images I've seen of the gondolas there had prominent American flags posted on their bows.
Half the gondolas were open, the others had cloth canopy covers - the
felze di tela type.
Many of the felzes were done in the striped cloth you see in the above image.

Thus far, I haven't been able to determine how many gondolas were there, but my research continues...

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