Lea Library Exhibit

Lea Library Exhibit, Fri., Sept. 21, 9:30 am – 4 pm

View materials from Penn’s collection related to Japan’s display at the 1876 Philadelphia Centennial Exposition and the 1893 World’s Columbian Exposition.


Philadelphia Centennial Exposition (1876)

“Perhaps the greater part of the pleasure we receive in making the acquaintance of another nation is in the surprise it gives us, in the fillip our minds receive at being suddenly confronted with some utterly new and different way of dealing with a familiar topic–some revelation on a threadbare theme.  All this charm was in a kind of detail that travellers, for the most part, do not write about, and that we only see when we get the daily life of the people put before our eyes as we had it during our Exhibition.

It is not strange that the Japanese department was one of the main centres of attraction, and the delight of lovers of the curious and the bizarre, and at the same time of the delicate and intricate workmanship.  Of all that was wonderful and beautiful in the Exhibition, the Japanese exhibit was certainly not the least bewildering and beautiful.  Even in the arrangement of her display, Japan showed her characteristic art.”

-from J.S. Ingram, The Centennial Exposition, Described and Illustrated, Being a Concise and Graphic Description of the Grand Enterprise (Philadelphia: Hubbard Brothers, 1876), p. 559

Erecting the Japanese buildings                            The Japanese Bazaar                               The Japanese Dwelling
in Fairmount Park                                                                                                      (headquarters of Japan chair, Saigo Tsugumichi)




World’s Columbian Exposition (1893)

May 1893 dedication of Ho-oden, inspiration                   Ho-oden (Phoenix Palace)                            Japanese horticultural exhibit
to Frank Lloyd Wright

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