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World's Columbian Exposition

In 1893 the city of Chicago hosted the World's Columbian Exposition. The fair's mix of green spaces and Beaux Arts buildings offered the vision of a more pleasantly habitable metropolis than the crammed industrial center that rose from the ashes of the Great Fire. However, a ruffled Louis Sullivan prophesied that "the damage wrought to this country by the Chicago World's Fair will last half a century." He wasn't entirely wrong in his prediction—the neoclassical style vied sharply over the next decades with the native creations of the Chicago and Prairie schools, all the while incorporating their technical advances. One of Hyde Park's most popular destinations—the Museum of Science and Industry—was erected as the fair's Palace of Fine Arts. It's one of only three of the exposition's buildings still standing; the others are the Art Institute of Chicago building and a small ladies' "comfort station" behind the MSI.

Updated: 2014-02-11

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