Monday, January 12, 2015

New York World's Fair

Today I have a random selection of photos from the 1964 New York World's Fair!

Let's start over at the Mexico pavilion, where a wonderful Aztec calendar (or a copy, anyway), also known as the Sun Stone, or the Stone of the Five Eras, was displayed. It is almost 12 feet in diameter and over 3 feet thick. Luckily, it is easy to carry at a mere 24 tons. It was unearthed in Mexico City in 1790, and is probably the most famous piece of Aztec sculpture. Wikipedia sez that "…the exact purpose and meaning of the Calendar Stone are unclear". In fact, it is "… more likely to have been used primarily as a ceremonial basin or ritual altar for gladiatorial sacrifices, than as an astrological or astronomical reference". So now you know!

Here's a photo of one of the many fountains at the Fair… this one is the "Solar Fountain", located near the Eastman Kodak pavilion. It was situated in a 120-foot diameter pool, and featured a "golden bubble with sparkling glass inserts. A vertical column, 40 feet high, supports a 6-foot diameter golden sunburst waterfall". Nice!

A mother and daughter take a break in front of the Caribbean Pavilion, which is described thusly: "An enormous terrace dotted with palm trees, cafe tables and the flags of eight Caribbean areas distinguishes this pavilion. Two low, glass-faced structures with Spanish tile roofs exhibit and offer for sale many island products - among them tortoise-shell jewelry, straw hats and bags, wood carvings and ceramics. The dominating building is a large restaurant and bar. Hung with colorful headgear, the restaurant presents steel bands, calypso singers and Caribbean dancers". 

The impressive Republic of China pavilion rises in the background. 

And finally, one of Mothra's eggs (sponsored by IBM) dominates this scene, and is reflected in the Pool of Industry. I want to meet the Shobijin (you know, the tiny fairies who live on Mothra's island!).


Chuck said...

Unfortunately, there are precious few surviving pictures of the Shobijn taken at the '64 NYWF.

Is there another copy of the Calendar Stone at the Mexico Pavilion at EPCOT, er, excuse me, Epcot? Or am I thinking of the Calendar Girl? And now I'm right back to the Shobijn...

Dennis Levittown NY said...

Major, one day i expect to see myself as a kid walking around in the background of one of your Worlds Fair pictures.
Dennis - Levittown, Long Island, NY

Nanook said...

@ Chuck-

Back when it opened, at least, the correct nomenclature was either: EPCOT or Epcot Center. Lord only knows what the "rules"are these days - if any.

Dean Finder said...

EPCOT Center became EPCOT, then became Epcot. Apparently, it's no longer an acronym to Disney Parks management.
And yes, there's another copy of the Calendar Stone there:

Chuck said...

Thanks, Dean!

Major Pepperidge said...

Chuck, it's true, the Shobijin were rarely seen at the NYWF. I've never been to EPCOT, but I wouldn't be surprised if there is a copy of that famous stone.

Dennis, I hope that happens, and if it does, you'll have to tell me!

Nanook, I think Chuck was referring to the fact that it is now just "Epcot". For some reason.

Dean Finder, I guess I should have read ahead to see your comment! Thanks for the info about the calendar stone.

Snow White Archive said...

Long live Mothra!