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Details about  1939 New York NY World's Fair Complete 4 DVD Set - World of Tomorrow - A15-18

1939 New York NY World's Fair Complete 4 DVD Set - World of Tomorrow - A15-18
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The Historical Archive

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1939 New York NY World's Fair 4 DVD Set

The 1939 New York World's Fair, located on the current site of Flushing Meadows-Corona Park (also the location of the 1964 New York World's Fair), was one of the largest world's fairs of all time. Many different countries around the world participated in it, and over 25 million people attended its exhibits. The NYWF of 1939 allowed all visitors to take a look at "The world of tomorrow."

In 1935, at the height of the Great Depression, a group of New York City businessmen decided to create an international exposition to lift the city and the country out of depression. Not long after, these men formed the New York World's Fair Corporation, whose office was placed on one of the higher floors in the Empire State Building. The NYWFC elected Grover Whalen as the president of their committee. The whole committee consisted of Winthrop Aldrich, Mortimer Buckner, Floyd Carlisle, John J. Dunnigan, Harvey Dow Gibson, Fiorello La Guardia, Percy S. Straus, and many other business leaders.

Over the next four years, the committee planned, built, and organized the fair and its exhibits. Countries around the world took part in creating the biggest international event since World War I. Finally, on April 30, 1939, the fair had its grand opening, with 200,000 people in attendance.

One of the most famous exhibits was a time capsule, which was not to be opened till 6939 A.D. The time capsule was a tube containing writings by Albert Einstein and Thomas Mann, copies of Life Magazine, a kewpie doll, a dollar in change, a pack of Camel cigarettes, millions of pages of text on microfilm, and much, much more.

Other exhibits included the Chrysler Air-flow, a streamlined pencil sharpener, and one of the first televisions. There was also a huge globe/planetarium located near the center of the fair. Bell Labs' Voder, a keyboard-operated speech synthesizer, was demonstrated at the Fair.

The fair was open for two seasons, and was officially closed forever on October 27, 1940. It attracted over 45 million visitors and generated roughly $48 million in revenue. Since the Fair Corporation had invested 67 million dollars (in addition to nearly a hundred million dollars from other sources), it was, in fact, an economic failure, and the corporation declared bankruptcy.

The Fair was themed. It was divided into different "zones" (a Transportation Zone, a Communications Zone, and so forth). The wildly popular but less uplifting Amusements Area was not integrated into the thematic matrix, and was a mere Area rather than a Zone. The zones were distinguished by many subtle cues, including differently colored lighting. The "Theme Center" consisted of two landmark monumental buildings named the Trylon and Perisphere. The design of Disneyland, with its themed Frontierland, Tomorrowland and central Cinderella's Castle clearly owes something to the 1939 World's Fair. The resemblance of Walt Disney World's EPCOT Center to the Fair is even closer, and was widely noted by architectural writers when it opened. Epcot's geodesic-sphere "Spaceship Earth" bears a distinct family resemblance to the Perisphere.

Despite the high-minded educational tone that Grover Whalen attempted to set, the "Amusements Area" was the most popular part of the Fair and included roller coaster, a parachute jump (which was later moved to Coney Island where it still stands), and carnival acts such as a collection of performing midgets. Many of the shows provided spectators with the opportunity of viewing women in revealing costumes: the Frozen Alive Girl, the Dream of Venus Building, and, above all, Billy Rose's Aquacade.

A special subway line, the IND World's Fair Railroad, was built to serve the fair. World's Fair (now Willets Point-Shea Stadium) station on the IRT Flushing Line was rebuilt to handle fair traffic on the IRT and BMT. A Long Island Rail Road station (now Shea Stadium) was built next to the Flushing Line station.

Here are all the films that make up this historical collection:

Contents of DVD 1

The World's Fair: August 1940

This film highlights the New York Worlds Fair in August of 1940. It shows the Ford Building, the Electrical Building, the Japanese building, a parade, the City of Light and several other exhibits. It provides an excellent overview in its 4 minutes.

Producer: Unknown
Audio/Visual: Silent, Color
Run time: ~ 4 Minutes

New York World's Fair, 1939-40 (1939)

Take a 30 minute tour of the World of Tomorrow. This is a wonder film to orient you on the goings on at the world fair - capturing all the major highlights in its 30 minutes.

Producer: Wathen (R.W.)
Audio/Visual: Silent, Color
Run Time: 27:57

To New Horizons (1940)

This film documents General Motor's contribution to the worlds fair - GMs Futurama exhibit in its Highways and Horizons pavillion. It showcases the wonderful future world of 1960 - which given the mental state of the American people during this time of war was quite a marvel and momentary escape from a world that had just rolled from a depression to a war.

Producer: Jam Handy Organization
Audio/Visual: Sound, Color
Run time: 22:59

Contents of DVDs 2-4 - The Medicus Collection

Medicus collection: New York World's Fair, 1939-40 (1939)



This is an incredibly detailed documentation of the "World of Tomorrow". These 3 DVDs contain what is the most complete World's Fair experience you can here. This film explores every facet of the World Fair from the perspective of one of its visitors. Medicus painstakingly documented his entire experience at the fair and produced this wonderful work that spans 6 hours. In that time, he truly captures all the wonder and majesty of the fair. For someone looking to experience the full fair, this is the collection for you. It will give you a complete tour of all the exhibits, rides, attractions, primary shows and impromotu street shows that were part of the everyday excitement of this unique fair.

Producer: Medicus (P.)
Audio/Visual: Silent, Color
Run time: ~ 6 hours on 3 DVDs
Note: This series contains a small amount of nudity.

 


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This product is a DVD. It is region free so it can play on DVD players anywhere in the world.

All our DVDs are professionally produced and packaged in DVD cases. This allows you to easily store them with your DVD collection. Our DVDs are designed to play on all home DVD players and all computer DVD players. They are region free, NTSC productions. Please be aware that in many instances, the master films of these old films are not of the same quality as a modern mega-million dollar production and from time to time, you may notice small quality imperfections that you would not see in a modern production.

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