Thursday, May 27, 2010

New York World's Fair Smorgasbord

I decided to throw a bunch of oddball World's Fair photos in one post today!

As a kid I was fascinated with America's space program, so I would have loved to see this. It's a full-sized model of a Gemini space capsule (as part of the US Space Park); the first Gemini mission would not launch until March of the following year. This capsule is only 1.5' wider and 1' taller than the single-passenger Mercury capsules!

The Pavilion of American Interiors had ...exhibits of furniture, floor coverings, fabrics, tableware, paints, decorations and lighting fixtures are housed in this four-story, two-wing pavilion. On view are model rooms created by leading designers, and a number of "do-it-yourself" exhibits. The crowds never materialized for this exhibit, and it barely limped along in the 1965 season, eventually realizing a financial loss.

This is a sort of interesting view, dominated by one of those strange inflatable structures that look like giant clusters of insect eggs. Mothra? I think that those things indicated the location of snack bars.

OK, I have NO clue what this is from. A kangaroo and her joey wear a leopard-skin coat, just like they do in real life. If anybody knows what this is, tell me!

It turns out that Abraham Lincoln wasn't just a robot, he was actually a real U.S. President! Who knew?! You'd find this equestrian statue of Honest Abe out in front of the Illinois pavilion. Sculpted by Anna Hyatt Huntington, it was entitled, "Abraham Lincoln: On the Prairie". His future as a great President was foreshadowed by his ability to read a book and ride a horse at the same time. Just like I can drive on the freeway and text all of my peeps. L8R!


Chiana_Chat said...

LOL gem of a commentary Maj.

model of a Gemini space capsule? Oh to have seen that!

The American Interiors flopped because it would've been showing post-1965 design style, which was lamer. It came too late!

Mothra? ROTFL

stu29573 said...

The Gemini was also the only capsule with ejection seats. A former NASA engineer that worked on the project told me that they certainly would have never saved anyone. Its a good thing they never had to use them!

TokyoMagic! said...

Again, wish I could have seen this fair!!! I think those those bubble roofed snack bars were all called "The Brass Rail," but don't hold me to that.

Whatever that kangaroo was for, it looks like her jaw is hinged so she probably spoke! Maybe she was the pre-show for Lincoln!!!

Vintage Disneyland Tickets said...

Any post with a Mothra reference is tops with me! I can hear the twins sining her song now....

Speaking of giant insects, those eggs sacks are freaky, doesn't even look real?

The kangaroo secretly dreams of joining the cast of America Sings...

Andrew said...

The American Interiors probably needed a cooler name to peak more people's curiosity at the time, like: Rooms of the Future! ...then they might have seen what was in store for the '70s.

Major Pepperidge said...

Thanks Chiana!

Stu, I knew that there were ejection seats in some capsules, but I can't imagine how they would have worked without killing the astronauts.

TokyoMagic!, I'm not sure if all of those bubble buildings were "Brass Rail" restaurants, wish I could find out more!

VDT, I will be sure to add more Japanese monster references.

Andrew, you might be right! With so much to see at the Fair, "American Interiors" sure sounds boring.

Katella Gate said...

Re the Gemini ejection seats of death: When it comes down to a choice between certain death and probabe death, I choose probable.

Speaking of the space program's dirty laundry, now that we are weeks from being officially "Out of Business" I can tell you nothing was holding the lower stages of the Apollo rocket together but weight and inertia. I knew the engineer that designed the inter-stage rings for Saturn V, and he said couplers weren't necessary. He also didn't have a degree in anything because he didn't want to take a foreign language.

.. And just to demonstrate how necessary advanced College degrees are in engineering, he went on to supervise the design of the B-1 Bomber wings.

Old Dog said...

Dang. I hate these mystery photos. I will not rest until I figure out that what that talking kangaroo thing is.

Chuck said...

Lots of info out there on the Gemini ejection seat program. Check out for a basic description of the system and for a chronology of the testing program.

I'm with Katella Gate - I'd rather be blown out of a space capsule with a chance that the system may malfunction than be blown up with a malfunctioning Titan rocket.

Nancy said...

very cool, as always. love a trip to the Fair

seeing the Gemini capsule would have been so great. i love visiting NASA and i got to see the Space Shuttle Enterprise at the New Orleans World's Fair in 1984 when we visited my cousins there

i would have loved seeing The Pavilion of American Interiors. im weird, you remember.... aside from Disney park music or books about the making of them, stuff for the house is my favorite gift

those weird egg-sack looking things look like some kind of fabric in these pics. i always thought they looked they were made of plastic in other pics we have seen not so close up

thanks for can never show too much of this one! :-)


Major Pepperidge said...

Yes, I think I might take my chances with the ejection as well.

Nancy, what is avenesca??

Nancy said...

it was the word i had to write in the box, but it sounds more like a spell that i heard in a Harry Potter book/movie!!

stu29573 said...

On the ejection seats, if its all ya got, its all ya got. However, they had a perfectly workable system with Mercury and later with Apollo, so they seats really never made much sense...