W.S. Myers Diary of his trip to the 1893 World's Fair in Chicago, IL

A Trip to the “World’s Fair”

at Chicago, Illinois

from Oct. 15 to 22, 1893


Wilbert S. Myers

Miami, Saline, MO

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Sunday, October 15, 1893

I left Miami, Mo., this eve at 4:45 o’clock, crossing the River in skiff, in company with Miss Emma Wheeler, who was on her way back to Wakenda, to her school. We reached the other side of the River at 5 o’clock. We then had a real nice ride in the hack, driven by Jim Walden, who met us at the River, and we reached the depot at Miami Station at 5:30 o’clock. There I met the boys, who were to join me in my trip to the Fair.

Miami Station, MO

This is a later view of the Miami Depot...circa 1905

After reaching the depot and having warmed-up, I went out with the boys on the railroad track, to ride on a hand-car that belonged to Mr. Robt. Shipp, the agent there at the depot. Harrison Wheeler, who was staying there with him, was riding up and down the track with Raymond Edmonds, one of the boys who was going to the Fair. So, after they got through, Harrison and myself took a ride way down the track, then back up. After that, Miss Emma and myself took a long, long ride down below Duck Lake, then way back, and up above the Station....a good little piece.

We then came in, and Miss Emma and self, along with Mr. Shipp and Harrison, went upstairs in the depot-parlor. There we had music, and so on, until supper was ready.

Mr. Shipp then called Bob Casebolt, who was downstairs with the boys, and who was also one of the boys going to the Fair with me, up to the parlor. Bob was kinfolk to Mr. Shipp’s wife. We were all invited out to supper, and it was there we feasted.....don’t mention it!!

After supper was over, we returned to the parlor where, after Bob Shipp and Harrison left, we had quite a nice little chat (Miss Emma and I)....until Harrison came up with my railroad ticket to Chicago. Harrison said he was doing this to give me that much more time.....which was real good of him, because “you” all know how it is!! Ahem!.. Ha!.. Ha!.. Ha!

I took the ticket, paying him (#Õ=), for same....also thanking him for his trouble!! He told me I had only 35-minutes to talk to Miss Wheeler, as in that time the train that I was going to take would be here. So he slammed the door, took his departure for the lower regions, leaving us alone again for a few minutes. The 35-minutes soon rolled around, and I was on my way to the train, meeting my friends on the platform.

Who was I going to join to see the Grand World’s Fair??? Those that I went with were: Mr. Robert Casebolt, Geo. S. Taylor, John Sibley, and Raymond Edmonds.

We then took the train at 9:05, which was on time, bidding all goodbye, and in a very few minutes we were on our way to Chicago.....rejoicing!! We were all feeling good, for we were all lucky as to get a chair....a recliner-chair, too! O!.. Don’t mention it!!

If we boys didn’t have fun now, then never were there any boys that had any!! After the train had stopped at Huntsville, I noticed a young lady, and also a friend who got on with her, who looked very much like Miss Lucy Gilliam, a young lady from Brunswick, who is teaching in our public-school, at home. I called the attention of her to the boys....and they all agreed that I was right. So, as luck would have it, the ladies took their seats right across the aisle from us.....

So I told the boys we would work a scheme, to find out if “she” was a sister to Miss Lucy, or not. Then I commenced talking real loud to all the boys about “a Miss Lucy Gilliam” of our town.....and as to how Alvan Ruxton was taking-it, since Dr. Wheeler had commenced going-out with Miss Lucy....

As soon as we commenced.....she (this young lady) began to look at us so strange! So we began again.....talking about Miss Lucy, with her cook-apron on, passing the cream around in the parlor Sunday night to the boys....and so on....

We then made like we had gone to sleep, and this young lady said, “I’ll bet those boys over there are from Miami, for I have a sister there who is teaching school by the name of Lucy Gilliam.” The young lady who was with her said, “O, Lettie Gilliam, that is just who they are.” She continued, “ I’m stuck on that boy over there with the little hat on, in the corner.”

Now we were still pretending we were all asleep. The “boy” in the corner was....Geo. Taylor! So they kept up with that talk for a little while, saying they wouldn’t let us sleep, if they could help it, for we had made so much noise when they wanted to sleep! Just then, one of us rose-up.......and I wish you could have seen their faces!!!!!

This kind of fun was going on all night. We just had a holy-picnic, I’ll tell you!

Then....day began.

Monday, October 16, 1893

Dawn broke at 6:15 o’clock. We soon reached Decatur, where we had to change cars, as the car in which we were riding was not going through. So, as we changed, we did not get in the same car again as the girls, but we saw them in the next-to-last car. We were lucky enough to get in “a chair car” again, but they didn’t. The car was just crowded all the way. We got up several times, from Decatur to Chicago, to give our seats to ladies who were going to stop-off at way-stations. Raymond and I had quite a time, getting on-and-off at stations, as the train stopped......also riding on the platform, taking in the view of the country, as we passed-by. We saw some lovely country, let me tell you! This was my first time out of the state of Missouri, and it was all “big sights” to Wib!

We ate breakfast on the train, Raymond and I together, as we had seats together. We also ate dinner on the train, although Raymond and John got off at Forrest (where the train stopped for 20-minutes) and got a cup of coffee. The train was one-hour late. We should have arrived in Chicago at 1 o’clock, but it was 2 o’clock before we reached there.

We all got off at Englewood, and from there we struck for “Wash Folck’s,” the place where we were told to put-up at - 6335 to 6337 Woodlawn Ave. We found the place all-okay, and got rooms for all of us at 75-cents each, putting all five of us in one room...No. 5, on the second-floor.

After leaving our grips and our overcoats there, we then walked down, and up, on 63rd Street, where we struck for the “elevated-road” to the City, which we took, and went on to Congress Street. Getting off there, we walked up to Monroe and Franklin Streets, and struck for Marshall Fields & Co.’s large wholesale house. I went in and bought three cloaks for the boss, then went through part of the Store with Mr. Butler. Marshall Field is only worth $40,000,000!!! He has three fine Stores in Chicago.

We then took-in part of Chicago, and then, coming to a “banana-stand,” we got a dozen each. But upon further investigation, I found out that mine were too green to eat!! So, as we were out on the bridge, standing and looking down at the Chicago River, a little, poor, ragged, boy came along, so I gave the bananas to him, telling him to take them home and keep them until they got ripe, and then they would be all OK.

Then we turned back toward the City, coming down State Street, and then over to Congress St., where, as it was then dark, we could see the City all lighted-up with electricity.....and it looked beautiful, I tell you! We then stopped in a lunch-house and got oysters for supper. After that, we went up a flight of steps, about 25-feet up over the street, and took the elevated street-car line for Woodlawn Ave., and our “boarding place.” Soon after, we got on 63rd Street again, this time going down to see “Buffalo Bill’s Great Show.” Bob and Geo. said they wouldn’t go in, but John, Raymond, and myself, did. They did come in later tho, but didn’t get with us!

This was just a grand show! Saw some of the best shooting done by a man, and also by a girl, that I have ever seen before. Also some good riding on wild horses, and many other strange things that I had never seen, but it would take too long to mention all of them here. The show was out at 10 o’clock, and we were very near frozen, as we had no overcoats with us. So we came out just about 5-minutes before it was over, to avoid all the rush and crowd that was there. We got home at a little after 10 o’clock. But, going to our room, we made a mistake and ran into the wrong room....just one room below us....and, lo and behold, who did we run across, but Dr. Wheeler and Mr. Sam Royars, sitting there talking with some Marshall men, and that was all quite a surprise to us!

So they were at the same house we were! They had a room up on the 3rd floor, tho. We then went around to “our” room, where we found ourselves “home” before Bob and George. We each sat down and counted what our expense had been for that day. I found mine to be ( #Õ¹?), that is, counting my railroad ticket in on today’s expenses. Raymond said he promised them, at home, to write a postal everyday, so, as he wrote, and John retired, I wrote a letter to Papa, and one to G. T. Taylor, in regard to the cloaks I had bought, and the braid I couldn’t get. Also wrote a few lines to (E. W.)...you know who! Then I retired, myself, feeling somewhat tired and worn out! This has been a lovely day .......

Tuesday, October 17, 1893.

We arose this a.m., at 6:15 o’clock, getting breakfast at our boarding place. We then struck out at 7 o’clock, taking 64th Street, where we got our lunches, for dinner. We then struck for the sights of the Fairgrounds, for our “first-time,” going in on the 64th St. entrance.

The first building we struck was the Transportation Building, in which we saw more old relics than enough! This, we only took-in, in part, and will finish later. Next we took the intramural railroad to the South Loop, and back up to the North Loop, getting a glance over all the Grounds. We then got off at the North Loop, coming, first, to the Fishery Building. We took this in, finding it to be an immense thing!

Before I go further, I will say that George Taylor and Bob Casebolt went together, and Raymond, John, and myself, went together. After finishing the Fishery Bldg., we then ate dinner. After dinner, we took-in the U. S. Government Building, and then, over to the “War Ship,” going through that. We also went through the Life-Saving Building. This was certainly a grand show! We heard the man explain it all to some ladies....we were just in time to hear it all. We then crossed over to the Transportation Bldg., again. We saw two big drills, put on by the soldiers, which was real interesting. We then went through the United States Hospital. This was very nice, too. We didn’t take it all in, though. What we saw, though, was very nice.

We had promised to meet Geo. Taylor and Bob Casebolt in front of the Transportation Bldg., this eve, at 5:30 o’clock. We went there and waited, as we had promised them, but they didn’t come. That is, we waited until 6 o’clock and we didn’t see them. But they claimed they were there.......but we never did see them!!

We then took-in the Electricity Building, tonight. This was perfectly grand......one of the most magnificent scenes I have ever seen, yet, in all my life. Just as we were ready to take-in the second floor, I heard someone call me, and, turning around, who could it be but Frank Taylor, and his friend, Leonard. We talked about 15-minutes, and agreed to meet at 2:30 o’clock, in the Manufacturers and Liberal Arts Bldg., on Wednesday.

We then separated - Frank and friend going home - and we finished-up the Electricity exhibit. This was just perfectly grand....everything so bright and brilliant, especially those flashes of electricity forming different angles and monograms, etc. This exhibit was perfectly immense, I must say. The different exhibits I made note of, seen in these different buildings, will be found mentioned, and dates given, in another part of this book, as I didn’t take the time to mention them here.

On coming out of the Electricity Building, we fronted a big music-stand, where we heard one or two of the finest pieces of music that I have ever listened to. It was just grand! It was played by Dennis’ 13th Regiment Band, of 50-members....very equal to Gilmore, in number, but it did equal them in music, let me tell you! Although I never heard Gilmore’s, but those that had heard him said, “this was just as good, if not better.” I tell you....this Band was strictly “in it!”

After listening to the Band, we took our departure from the grounds, at 7:15 o’clock, coming out on 64th St., and getting some oysters for our supper. On my way home, I bought a “World’s Fair Photo Map,” of the Fair and also of the City, for (¹=)cents. We then came on to our room, and talked with the boys. We then footed-up our expenses for the day, finding Raymond and I coming out on the same amount......each was only (FC=), for today. Then we sat and talked some more until about 10 o’clock. We got home first, again, tonight. Bob and Geo. didn’t get in until a half-hour after we did. Then at 10:30, we all retired. Attendance at Fair today was 278,146.

Wednesday, Oct. 18, 1893

This morning we got up at 6 o’clock, as there were such crowds, the morning before, in the wash room, and there was only one on the second floor, and none in your rooms, at all. We thought we would be ahead, which we were......all except Bob! He had to be late!! So, therefore, he was late for breakfast, too. We got breakfast, tho, among the first, and we started for the Grounds, going down, as usual, on 64th St., to get lunch (for our dinner). And, who should we meet, but Mrs. Armstrong, of Kansas City. I talked to her a few minutes, and then went on with the boys, reaching the Grounds at 7:45 o’clock.....later than ever before. We then struck for the “Midway Plaisance,” paying 10-cents, for entrance. First we walked clear to the other end, and, coming back, we took-in the Ferris Wheel, paying 50-cents to have a ride.The Ferris Wheel at the 1893 World's Fair, Chicago, Ill. We three went up at 8:30 o’clock..... going-around twice-in-16-minutes. It went up 264-feet-high, and had 36-cars on it. We were only on it 17-minutes.....it being so foggy and smoky, we didn’t get much of a view of the City.

We then took in a sideshow, paying ( = cents), for same.....to see the “dancing girls,” which was out-of-sight......you know it!!! Next we bought a ticket for “The Streets of Cairo,” paying (L¹ cents) for it, and then went through its great, old, streets. It certainly was a funny-old-sight.....streets so narrow, not more than half as wide as our streets, and the Stores all in the open.....looked so different! Raymond bought a glass, for 20-cents, having put on it, “Down this Street.” I bought a little larger one, paying 30-cents, having, “Cairo Street, World’s Fair, 1893,” on one side, and my “W. S. M.” on the other. It is so pretty! That fellow is an engraver, too, I tell you! He wasn’t more than 3-minutes, putting mine on. We saw people riding camels, until you couldn’t rest! The camel-stand was just below the stand where we bought our glassware. After walking up and down, and seeing all the funny and different people, from all nations, on this street, we came out, and walked up Midway Plaisance to the “Moorish Palace.” Paying 25-cents, we then had the pleasure of seeing its “sights.” This was a lovely place, one of the prettiest and most magnificent scenes yet. Every room was plated-with-mirrors! You have no idea how one felt, walking around there and coming into contact with mirrors all the time! It was really interesting to watch others, and, no doubt, it would have been interesting to have seen us there, too! It certainly was funny!! We also saw the “bottomless- pit” (or “well”), in this building. It was fixed with a mirror, but it certainly looked deep!

............................................................................................Above is photo of the famous Ferris Wheel, 1893 World's Fair, Chicago, Ill. This photo was found on the Bowling Green University site: "America in the 1890's." (www.bgsu.edu)

We then bought a ticket for “Hell”, and all its torments! It certainly was horrible! You would have no idea what kind of place it could be, until you had seen this!! We then walked on out to where we were before, and then took-in the upstairs of the Palace....there finding images of all kinds, and they did look so real! The images that I saw will be mentioned further-on in this book.

We then bought a ticket for more “Dancing Girls,” paying 10-cents for it....and passed into another room. There we had the pleasure of seeing “a skirt-dance,” and listening to some good music. Having had all that we wanted of that, we came out and crossed over to the Libby Glass Works, paying 25-cents to go in there. And it was well-worth the money!! It certainly was a grand sight! It was our first time to have ever seen glass made, and it certainly was very interesting. We saw a fine dress made out of glass, and a thousand other things! We had a ticket given to us....good for 25-cents-off anything that we bought, but there wasn’t any of us that used ours.......we were on to their game!

It was now dinner-time, so, as we had seen them make most every kind of glass, and also color it, we took our departure from this Building, and went out on the lawn. We sat down there, and it was then that “we-three-poor-mortals-feasted!” Even though I got sandwiches in my lunch, without ham-between....ah, it tasted good to me no-how! We rested there awhile, then decided to go to the State Buildings, leaving the Midway, as we had seen about all we cared to.

Although we promised to meet Frank, today, at 2:30 o’clock, in the Transportation Building, we couldn’t get there, as we were too far from it. So, as we were right here at the State Buildings, we took them in. We went as follows: Illinois, Pennsylvania, New York, California, Connecticut, Florida, Idaho, Iowa, Kentucky, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Missouri, Montana, New Hampshire, New Jersey, North Dakota, Ohio, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Wisconsin, and West Virginia. I bought me a “Missouri-badge” in the Wisconsin Building, for (F¹) cents. Raymond got one, too.

There were lots of other Buildings, but these were the main State Buildings that we cared to go in. And we didn’t go in any of the Foreign Buildings, at all. The next thing we took-in was the Palace of Fine Arts. This we went into at 4 o’clock, and remained until very near 7 o’clock. We got a glance at just about all of it, too. I tell you, there were some fine pictures in there! Some beauties! Some of the finest and largest I have ever seen.

We then came out, and it was after-dark. On coming-out, we found the Grounds to be beautifully decorated with the “electric-gels.” It was just grand. On walking over toward the Electricity Building, we witnessed the “grand illuminations.” This, too, was just grand and magnificent.....one of the most brilliant of scenes that I have ever seen. It was just lovely, let me tell you. After looking at this for a long, long, time, and seeing the water flowed beautifully over its fountains, in all colors and shapes, we ALL found this to be just lovely and grand!!!

Next we walked over to Puck’s Great Buildings, and saw it in motion....this was quite a sight, too! Then we went through the Steamship Building.....quite a view, and we enjoyed it very much. As we were then about worn out from our day’s sight-seeing, we took our departure from the Grounds, coming out on 64th Street. There, we stopped and had oysters again, for our supper.

We then went to our room. After talking and chatting with the boys, and footing-up our expenses, I found mine to be only (ÚF¹???) for today. The other boys retired, but I didn’t, for awhile. I wrote a letter to Mr. Taylor, telling him I wouldn’t be back on Saturday, as I told him I would, before I left. Then I wrote a letter to Emma tonight. As I then had such a bad cold, I took 10-grains of quinine, and bid farewell to the day. Our group of three got-in, again tonight, just before Bob and Geo. did. Attendance today = 292,458.

Thursday, Oct. 19, 1893

This morning we got up and were about the first to get to the washroom, and also about the first to get breakfast! We then started out, going on our usual old street, mailing our letters as we went, and getting our lunch ready, for dinner. When we entered the Fairgrounds, we met Dr. Wheeler and Mr. Sam Royars (Royers), at the gate. We stood and talked to them for a few minutes, then separated....they going one way and we the other Bob and Geo. didn’t start out with us this morning, for they didn’t get breakfast when we did, so they had to wait.

We then struck the Palace of Mechanical Arts, first thing this a.m. This was just grand! I saw more in this Building than ever yet, as this one interested me more than the others. I saw lots in this Building that was in my line.....such as the manufacture of ginghams, calico, jeans, cottons, silks, ribbons, yarns, domestics of all kinds, silk handkerchiefs, and so on. I tell you....this was a grand sight for Wib!!

John and I got so interested in this that we got separated from Raymond, and when we went to look for him, he was gone. We kept looking for him, but couldn’t find him, so we gave up, not expecting to see him anymore until night. So John and I went on and finished-up this Building. We saw wood carved in every shape here....also went down to the boiler room and, there, saw the biggest boilers in the world! We then came on out, and walked over to see “Krupp’s Big Gun,” but it wasn’t open. So, as to not waste any time, we then went on over to the Leather and Shoe Building, and just as we went in......who do you think we met with??? It was Raymond Edmonds, the one who we had no idea of ever seeing again before going to our room!! We three then went through this Building, together, taking-in all its sights, which were more than I can mention. One thing I saw was where shoes were first commenced, and then finished. This was a big sight, for me! Saw lots and lots that I will mention in my notes, over in back of this book. This was a grand building, let me tell you!

We then took-in “Krupp’s Big Gun,” just before eating dinner. This was an immense thing. We decided to take the “moving sidewalk,” buying a ticket for 10-cents, and there eating our dinner, going around twice. Then, after finishing our dinner, we left the moving-sidewalk, and walked over to the Anthropological Building. Here we saw the various exhibits of foreign nations, also the first electrocution-chair, and lots and lots of other exhibits.

Next we went through the Michigan “outdoor-logging” Company. There we saw a load of 27-logs, said to have been drawn by two horses. As this was a very small building, it didn’t take us long to go through it. So we then went over to the Transportation Building, deciding to finish-it-up.....which we did, and saw some grand and wonderful things. This was certainly a very interesting Building, and one could walk for hours and hours, and not get tired of it.....seeing something new all the time.

After having finally done this Building “justice,” or as near we could, we came out and bid it, “farewell.” We then struck for home, coming out on our usual street, and eating supper before taking Woodlawn Ave., to home. Returning to our room, we, Raymond and I, as usual, footed-up our expenses for the day. Mine was just (FL), just about 15-cents less than his. His smoking cigars made the difference.

Then Raymond and John went out again, to take-in more sights, but, as I had such a cold, I remained in the room. After they had left, Dr. Wheeler came in and talked to me for a long, long, time. He had moved his room down next to ours, as he had given-up his room to some ladies. The Dr. said that just as he and Mr. Royars were leaving the Fairgrounds, they ran across Geo. Taylor, down at the “merry-go-round.”

Just then, Mr. Folck came in, and said, “if we didn’t object, he would like to put a Mr. Robertson , from near Marshall, in with us, as Mr. G. Taylor had paid-him-up this morning, and said he was going home.” This was strange news to us, as Geo. had said he wasn’t going home until we did, and then, with the Dr. just seeing him tonight...........? So when the boys came back in, and Bob was with them, we asked about George. They said that they hadn’t seen him, and Bob said that when he came from breakfast this morning, everyone was gone, so he just supposed that Geo. had gone with us! (So, I suppose that Geo. has struck a cheaper house, but, as we won’t see him anymore, until we get home, there is no use for us to worry over it! For Geo. is certainly old enough and big enough, too, to take care of himself!) So, after the Dr. left us, I wrote a few lines to E. W., and then took some more quinine for my cold, and retired. Attendance today at Fair was 307,416.

Friday, Oct. 20, 1893

We got up and started out, as there was such a big crowd waiting for breakfast. We went down on 64th Street and got breakfast, but didn’t take our lunch with us today, for we expect to finish the Fairgrounds by noon, and then take-in the City this eve, so we will get our dinner up in the City. We then struck for the Grounds, again, for our last time, feeling good that we had no lunch to bother with, swinging on our arms!

We first took-in the Manufacture of Liberal Arts, which we found to be perfectly beautiful. Then the Horticultural Building, but, just before we went in, Raymond and self sat down, outside, for half-an-hour, just watching the “different specimens of humanity.” I never did see a boy laugh so hard in all my life, as I did Raymond! I’ll admit it wasn’t very nice, but still, I had to join-in, myself........for some of the “sights,” would make a wax-figure smile!

In the Manufacture of Liberal Arts Building, we all ran across a long-string of Edison’s phonographs. We each put a nickel in a slot to hear a piece, but it wouldn’t work, so we began to shake the machines. We shook and shook, thinking....”Well, our nickels were gone,” but, after a long time, Raymond’s started up, and then John’s, and then mine. We got to hear them after all! John’s and mine only played once, but the one Raymond had played it over three times.......so we divided the tube, one end of the tube in his ear, the other in mine....and, O! It was here we had fun. “Papa wouldn’t buy me a Boo-Who (?),” was the name of the piece.

In the Horticultural Building we saw fine displays of fruits and nuts, etc., from very near everywhere. It looked awful tempting, let me tell you. From there we went on to the “greenhouse,” and by the official “Guardhouse,” where we saw the guards coming out with big rolls of the fine-old-greenbacks! We then went on over to the corner of the Transportation Building, where we promised to meet the boys at 12 o’clock, to then bid the Fairgrounds “goodbye-forever,” and to take-in the City. (I forgot to say that last evening, at about 4 o’clock, we took a 5-mile ride out on Lake Michigan, which was awful nice. We were out on the Lake for 45-minutes.)

Well.....at 12 o’clock, and 15-minutes, today, we left the Fairgrounds for good, having seen about all we cared to see. We then came on out on 62nd Street, and taking the elevated road, we were, in a very short time, on our way to the City. We got off at Congress Street, and walked up to State Street, to No. 254, where we got a good 25-cent meal. It was a good dinner, too! I had “pie” for dinner, too. Ah! You Know It!!!

After getting dinner, and feeling good, we struck to see “The Battle of Gettysburg,” - a panorama. This, in simple words, was grand and beautiful, and so on.....I can’t really express it at all! It beat anything I ever saw!! It was so natural and plain that you actually couldn’t see when the curtain dropped to the real natural ground. This beat anything I have ever seen yet.....it was certainly grand, I must say! The men dying, and the blood, fire, and smoke, were all so natural.....just the same as real. This cost us (¹=F) to see it, but it was well-worth the money!!!

We then came out from the panorama, going on up the streets, taking in the City as we went. Then we came to Franklin and Monroe Sts., which brought us to “B. Kuppenheimer & Co.,” a large wholesale clothing house that we buy from. I stopped in there to see Mr. Sheiffer, a drummer that travels for that house, that I knew. Just as we stepped in the door....who should meet me first, but him! So, after talking a little while, he took us over the building, from top to bottom, taking us up in the elevator to the top floor where he showed us how the cutting was done. I saw one man cut-out eight-suits at one time! How was that for a sight??? After he took us over his building, he took us to the door, telling us to come back in about 15-minutes as he wanted to show us around some other buildings.

We then walked on down to see Carson Pirie Scott & Co., another firm we have bought from, and also C. M. Henderson, our great “Schoolhouse” shoe-man. Then, after seeing him, we came on back to Kuppenheimer’s and stopped by for Mr. Sheiffer, and he then took us and showed us some of the prettiest buildings I think I have ever laid-eyes-on. He took us in one and showed us the inside. It was all marble and brass, and just as lovely as could be. He showed us so many handsome buildings and took us on so many streets. He certainly was good and kind to us. He then left us, for home.

So then John Sibley wanted to show us where he bought his horse from. (Now....on this “city-trip,” Bob Casebolt was with us too, and, as Geo. was gone now, Bob and John were “pards” and Raymond and self were “pards.”) So John took us down a long street with a half-dozen more turns in it, crossing over the Chicago River. We then struck the street where he wished to show us , where he had bought his fine horse......No. 133 Pine Street. It was a little-old-place, looking nothing like where a man ought to buy a fine horse!!

We then returned from that place, going down on LaSalle Street, to No. 120, where we struck for Mrs. Beck’s son’s “Saloon.” We went in and looked around, but that was all. He certainly has got a fine place. We then came on back and got our supper at the same place where we got out dinner.....on Congress Street (oops, on State Street, I mean.....No. 254).

After eating our supper, and taking in a few more sights of the City, we then took the elevated road back to 63rd Street, where we got off, and, took our leave, for our room. We went in, finding Mr. Robertson had retired, but he was not asleep. We boys then got to talking, and, at last, decided that Geo. must have gone home, as none of us had seen him or heard anything of him at all! Raymond and self footed-up our expenses again for today, and mine was a little more than his today. Mine was (L=”).

Bob and self remained in our room tonight, but John and Raymond said.....as it was their last night in Chicago, they guessed they would have to go out. So, after Raymond had written his postal home, those two struck out.

Dr. Wheeler and Mr. Royar went home this eve. We will go on tomorrow eve. I wrote a few lines to Emma tonight. Ah, you know it! As I expect to rise early in the morning, I shall retire early tonight, as tomorrow a.m. is our last day in Chicago. Attendance today at Fair was 256,459.

Saturday, October 21, 1893

This morning at 6:45 o’clock we rose and got ourselves ready for breakfast, first time we were that late since we have been in Chicago. We got our breakfast and started for the Stockyards at 8 o’clock, taking the electric streetcar-line for the Stockyards and Armour’s Packing Company. We, after a long ride (about 16-miles from where we started) finally reached the Stockyards. I can truly say I saw more cattle there, in one pen, than I have seen together in all my life.....lots and lots of all kinds and all sizes.

We then walked across the bridge, which was fully a half-mile long, over all of these cattle, across to Armour Packing Co. We went through that, seeing how and where the hogs were killed....seeing them run in from the pen to where they were drawn-up and “stuck,” and then on through, I will say, 100-men, and finally into the cold-storage-room. We saw the sausage manufacturing also.

We then took in the “cattle-pen” and saw where they were driven into the pens by the old leader. He certainly was an old curiosity! As soon as he would get through leading them into one pen, he would then turn back and bring up another lot.....that way from one day to another!! We next saw where he “knocked them down,” after driving two in a pen, and from there, they commenced going through the same amount of men, until, at last, they, too, were run into the cold-storage-room.

Next thing we went through was the “buttering dept.” This was quite a sight also. We saw it first commenced, looking like old lard and grease, then on through until, at last, it was rolled in cloths and packed in buckets, ready for the shipments, or cold-storage-rooms. This was all quite a sight!

We then came out of this dept., and, as we didn’t have anymore time to spare (as we had about 18-miles to go before we reached the Union Depot), we didn’t get to take in their canning dept. We just didn’t have time to see it all.

We then walked back up to the corner where we were to wait for the streetcar, and....we were standing right next to a “banana stand.” O! You know my failing!! I couldn’t resist the temptation, so I squandered a dime, for a dozen. So we boys ate bananas until you couldn’t rest!!! They were such nice ones, too.

The horse-car soon made its appearance.....just loaded down with people. It was all we could do to get a toe-hold. But, as we had been used to this ever since we had been in Chicago, we didn’t care. All the lines were just the same. It looked as tho there were as many people on the streetcars as there were on the streets! And I believe there were, too!! I thought I had seen crowds before I came to Chicago, but....ah!, I was very much mistaken!

We then reached the street, or corner, where we had to get off the horse-car and take the electric-line, which was just as crowded, but a much nicer line, and it ran so much faster. This line took us down to Woodlawn Ave., where we boarded. We then got our lunches, to eat on the train going home. We were at 64th Street, our usual old lunch place, and it was a good one, too!

We then bid that portion of the City “farewell,” as we took the car-line into the City, then on down to the Union Depot. We got our dinner right across from the Depot, at a good restaurant. Then, after eating, we struck for the Depot, passing a big fruit-stand, where I bought two baskets of fruit, for (ÙL¹).

It was fine, too, let me tell you!! As I had my hands full, John Sibley said he would help me along, so he took one of the baskets, and we were again on our way to the Depot. After about a 5 or 10-minute walk, we were in the Union Depot, waiting for the train to come that would take us home. The train was due at 2:30 o’clock.

Raymond and John, having stepped-out, Bob and myself stayed to watch our baggage. We were sitting there, talking, when who should come by us, but Capt. John Burruss. He didn’t see us in the crowd, but we called to him and he came across and shook-hands with us, saying that Will and Lex McDaniel were over in the “Ladies Waiting Room,” with Mrs. Harvey. I then told Bob.....if he would watch our things, I would go across and speak to Lex, who was up from Kansas City. Capt. said he and Will were going back with us, so I went over and met Lex and Will, also Mrs. Harvey and her son. We stood there and talked a little while, and Lex walked with me back over to where the boys were, and we talked a few minutes more. Then our train moved-in, and the big iron gates opened, and the big bell rang. So we bid Lex “goodbye,” who was going to remain and take in the Fair.

We started for the big gate to get to our train. It was a “jam and cram,” sure enough! There wasn’t room for you to breathe. Bob, Raymond, and John, were ahead of me, and they shoved-in, showed their tickets, and got through. But, just as I went to go in, too, the police caught me, and pulled me back, saying, “Wished we could stand back until there was room for us to pass!!” The only consolation I had was....I wasn’t the only one to be pulled back. But, in a minute-or-so, I was let go, and there were the boys waiting for me on the other side of the gate!!! Ha!.. Ha!.. Ha!.. Ahem!So I caught up with them and we then struck in a dead run for a chair car, but, ah!, we were badly fooled on it, for all had been taken and we would do well to get a seat at all. So we struck for the next car, but when getting to that, it was locked! Had not been opened yet! But, we only had to wait a second, or so, and we were soon let in, being the first in the car. We got good seats, with Mr. Burruss and Will getting seats right across from us. We then remained in the car for sometime before it pulled out, cutting-up and going-on!! We certainly did have a good time!

The boys all bought a book to read on the way home, so I got one, too, but, after reading about 25-pages in it, I wasn’t very much stuck on it. I paid 25-cents for it, but I told Will Burruss he could trade it back, if he could, for anything he wanted, or could get. So, he took it up to the first car, where the news stand was, and came back with a box of lemon-drops, and two boxes of carmels, having got 15-cents for it. So, from then on, we had lemon drops and carmels until you couldn’t rest! I brought one box of carmels home, that we never opened. They certainly were nice.

On our way home we noticed several faces that we saw going to Chicago, but we didn’t get with “our girls.” We had one girl on, that went the night we did....a “red-headed girl.” Hurrah for “Rucker.” She was one of the girls in the “Rucker Club,” from Keytesville, at Carrollton’s big rally last fall. I remembered the face. She got off at Keytesville, too, this morning, so I suppose that is her home.

Sunday, October 22, 1893

About half-past 12 o’clock last night, we got chair cars, or rather, John and myself did, so we got quite a nice little nap. When coming to the Miami Station, John, Bob, and Raymond, got off, but I went on up to see “the World’s Fairest” at Wakenda. On looking out of the car window, just as we started off, Raymond jumped on, to ride a little piece......and then getting-off, it was real interesting to see him roll as he jumped-off. I guess he must have turned three-or-four-times, but he wasn’t hurt....only cutting his finger a little.

This winds up the World’s Fair trip. I must say, before closing this epistle, that we had one of the best times that was ever had by a crowd of boys, for such a length of time. This was the best trip and the grandest trip “I” have ever had, myself!... Ta!.. Ta!...

By one who was there..............W.


Addenda to Diary

Attendance at the Fair..............Chicago, 1893
May 1,050,037
June 2,675,113
July 2,760,263
August 3,515,493
Sept 4,656,902
Total 14,659,808

Oct. 1 thru 16th = 3,247,973
Oct. 16 235,287
Oct. 17 278,146
Oct. 18 292,458
Oct. 19 307,416
Oct. 20 256,459
Oct. 21 340,000
Oct. 22 thru 31 = 2,311,064
Total for Fair 21,928,611

More attendance notes
Opening day 128,965
Decoration Day 115,578
4th of July 283,273
“Illinois Day” 243,951
“New York Day” 160,382
“California Day” 231,522
Greatest Day in Paris, 1889...............397,150
Greatest Day in Philadelphia, 1876....217,526
“Chicago Day” 700,000



I SAW......

-Button that President Grover Cleveland touched to send the World’s Fair in motion
-Piece of the first cable-line that was put down....also the grappler that caught it when it was lost
-A complete “diving-suit”....on the old War Ship
-Shell that struck the U. S. Steamer Kearsarge, that struck it in its stern post, but did not go off. Saw the post with hole in it that shell struck, and stuck
-The first telephone that was ever made, or used.
-The highest building in the World, costing one-million-dollars-a-year to run it. It is 22-stories high. The building is 308-feet high (302-feet, where you stop). There is one room in this “Masonic Building” that is 24-feet high, which is in the middle of same.
-Brigham Young’s old bookcase and photo
-William Garth’s and Sec. Carlisle’s photos.....very large paintings.
-An old pistol made in 1700.
-A piece of the mulberry tree, under which, the settlers of Maryland landed on March 27, 1634.
-A chair of Mr. Stickney’s.....made in 1760. Also his furniture.
-A chest made from a piece of Geo. Washington’s first coffin.
-Geo. Washington’s old cup and saucer, from which he drank. His knife and nut-picks. Also a piece of his wife’s dress. We also saw his sofa that he sat on during the Revolutionary War.
-Geo. Washington’s old bed that he died in, and a room, arranged like it was when, and where, he died. Also one room fixed like it was where Mrs. Washington died.
-Old furniture that was 125-years-old....belonged to John Randolph. An old chest that was 211-years-old, belonging to Thos. Robinson. Sat down in the chair that all the Presidents had sat in....down to Grant.
-Daniel Webster’s old ink-stand, and many other old relics of his.
-Geo. Washington’s old snuff-box, his cane, old fish knife, an old needle-book, made from a piece of his wife’s dress.
-Saw Buffalo Bill’s Show.
-Battle of Gettysburg.
-Armour Packing Company.
-The old battle-war-ship (a reproduction of it).
-Life-Savings Building.
-United States Hospital.
-Dennis’ 13th Regiment Band....with 50-members.
-Went up in the Ferris Wheel, 264-feet-high, 36-cars on it, took 8-minutes to make a round. Going around twice for fifty-cents.
-Went through the “Streets of Cairo.”
-Went through the “Moorish Palace.”
-Saw “Hell.”
-Libby Glass Works.
-Alligator skins display.
-Pail for collecting and holding rubber.
-Display of calf-skins, and horse-hides.
-Water bag and saddle from Constantinople (Turkey).
-Saw complete horse-hide, said to be the largest in the world. Its color was bay.
-Elephant’s hide that was 1-inch thick.
-Fox-skin display.
-Saw a rubber tree.
-Goat-skin water bag, from Jerusalem, that was 80-years-old.
-A saddle and a pair of boots from Morocco.
-Alligator’s hide that was 13 1/4-feet-long.
-Saw and was in a ship (or, a reproduction of it), that Columbus crossed-in.......also the sign that he saw which said, “Keep off the grass!” Ha! .. Ha!.. Ha!
-Pair of shoes made in 1793.
-Moorish bridle and reins and moneybag from Africa.
-Water bucket that was carried by the Pilgrims going through Egypt.
-Saddle cover of fur, from Jerusalem.
-A coat of birdskins, from Alaska.
-Moorish tambourine.
-The leather box containing the Ten Commandments, that was strapped around the head of a Arab on his way to confession.
-Great cane-display, of leather.
-Double-headed calf.
-India Rubber Display.
-Leather Display.
-Making of shoes and boots.
-Rode on moving-sidewalk.
-Various Gods, worshipped by all nations.
-Saw first Electrocution Chair.....first-one-made.
-Fishing and hunting implements of the Indians and Eskimos on the North West Coast.
-Old German Bible of Martin Luther....commenced in 1522, finished in 1534.
-Queen Isabella’s old cloak.
-Colorado Reindeer Show.
-Snake 16-feet long, and big-around as a stovepipe.
-Mastodon......largest animal in the world, solid black, long hair.
-Load of 27-logs, said to have been drawn with two-horses.
-First electric-car made. It ran Aug. 1, 1873, on Clay Street, in San Francisco, Calif.
-Old colony-train that ran in 1834.
-The General Railroad Car, captured by raiders, on April 12, 1862, on the West Atlantic Railroad.
-Grace Darling’s boat. She was only 22-years-old, and saved the lives of nine-men, from the wreck of the “Forfarshire,” off Longstone on England’s Northumberland coast, on Sept. 7, 1838.
-Cut of cow that belonged to Mrs. O’Leary, that kicked over the lamp causing the great Chicago Fire of 1871.
-And old gondola, from Italy.
-Gun that was used on British “Man-of-War” in the naval-battle fought off Portland, Maine, in the War of 1812.
-An old skiff from Africa.
-Vermont sleigh 1788.
-Old cart of 1750.
-Carriage built and used by the Prince of Wales.
-Old “sha” from Japan.
-An old Mexican ox-cart.
-Former President Polk’s old carriage.
-Daniel Webster’s old carriage.
-Elephant tusk, 9-feet, 3-inches-long.....worth $2,000. Also a spittoon worth $500.
-Saw all kinds of goods in my business and how they were made.....such as ribbons, silks, calico, ginghams, jeans, cottons, and so on.
-All kinds of furs and stuffed animals.
-The biggest hammer in the world.
-The biggest steam-engine ever made.
-Paper Mill and its machinery.
-Fine paintings.....until you couldn’t rest!
-The old Liberty Bell.
-Some beautiful scenes of grain.
-Model of St. Louis Bridge.
-Plow, made and used by Daniel Webster.
-Mexican plow, 200 yrs. old, Egyptian plow, 250 yrs. old, American plow, 100 yrs. old.
-Every kind of fowl that could be mentioned.
-Leather belt 12-feet-wide, 3/4-inch-thick, and one 12-inches-wide, 10,000-feet-long.
-Saddle used by General Grant in late Civil War.
-Saw an electric boat, and shoe blacker.
-Every king of buggy, carriage, and so forth, that could be made.
-Latest street-cars.
-Old-fashioned coach and locomotive, on first train ever run.
-Vestibule train of Pullman cars...the finest ever made. Has smoking and library car, dining car with cut-glass, china, and silver-service. Also three sleeping-cars, costing $180,000.
-Elevator snow plow.
-First cable-grip-car made, and section of cable-way.
-Bicycles of all kinds, including reproductions of first one ever made.
-Bones of man, birds, and animals.
-Domestic fowl, stuffed and mounted.
-Pigeon-house, and pigeons of all varieties.
-Wild turkey pen and trap.
-Rocky Mountain Goats.
-Sea Otter....fur most valuable...brings from $3 to $500 each.
-Case showing chemical-construction.
-Indians of every nation, at all kinds of work.
-Collection of old musical instruments, from all nations.
-Embroidery representing “Elijah fed by the ravens.”
-Brass lamp used at the Feast of the Dedication of Hannikah, B.C. 169.
-Manuscript of the Book of Esther (a copy).
-Embroidery representing the “defeat of Goliath.”
-Linen table-center used at The Passover Meal. Also a brass dish.
-Embroidery used to cover dish of greens at Passover Meal.
-Silver spice box, used at time of Christ.
-Knife and cup used at the Rite of Circumcision.
-Jewish prayer books.
-Knife used by priests in slaying animals for sacrifice.
-Statuary representing the progress of Christianity.
-Original manuscript of the Declaration of Independence.
-Gen. Jackson’s sword.
-Old letters written by Geo. Washington and Benjamin Franklin, also Adams, Jefferson, Madison, Jackson, Polk, Van Buren, Monroe, Lincoln, Grant, Arthur, and Hayes.
-Great tree of California....26-feet in diameter.
-Washington’s commission as Commander-in-Chief of Colonial forces.
-Washington’s old sword.
-Washington’s diary, acct. book, and army reports.
-Sash used by Lafayette to bind-up his wound at the Battle of Brandywine
-Calumet pipe smoked by Geo. Washington, at the age of 17.
-Camp service of pewter, used by Washington throughout the Revolution.
-Four-pound gun that fired the first-shot of the Rebellion.
-Rifle that fired the last shot of the Rebellion.
-Flag display of every nation.
-Signal service instruments.
-Modern 52-ton, 12-inch gun, 37-feet-long.......weight of projectile = 1,000 lbs., charge of powder = 450 lbs.
-Old wagon that was in Sherman’s train through all his marches.
-Indian relics, sacred-shirt worn by Sitting Bull in fight where Custer was killed.
-Figures of officers and soldiers in their Revolutionary uniforms. Also those used in 1812.
-The U. S. Mint.
-Coins from every state in the Union.
-Saw a $10,000 gold and silver certificate. Also a collection of old bills
-Postage stamps of the United States....1847 to 1893.
-Model of first lighthouse.
-Different locks used in U. S. Mail Service, 1800 to 1893.
-Rocky Mountain Mail Coach, built in 1868.
-Dogs drawing sleds with U. S. Mail.
-World’s Fair Post Office.
-Artificial American fruits.
-Collection of insects (in cases).
-Tobacco exhibit.
-Fish of every description, size, and kind.
-Krupp’s cannon.....the biggest gun in the World. Forty-eight-feet long, 17-inch bore, 140-tons, has pierced steel plates, 2-feet-thick, at 9-miles, projectile weighs 2500 lbs. and is 5-feet-long. Also his three guns.....6, 4, and 3-inch bores.
-Life boats and cars. A metallic life-car which has saved 207 lives. Life-line box, etc.
-Man of War Illinois, in Lake Michigan.
-Exact model of Warship “Oregon,” built of brick, iron, and wood. Length overall = 358-feet, water-line = 348-feet, breadth = 69-feet. Cost = $100,000.
-The old guns picked up by Man-of-War, near Newport.
-Ruins of Yucatan.
-Colorado Cliff-dwellers.
-Went through Midway Plaisance.
-War-figures exhibit.
-The Assassination of Lincoln.
-Luther, in the midst of his family.
-A Moorish execution.
-Christ and the Samaritan woman, at the Well.
-Vagabonds, in stocks.
-The Sleeping Beauty.
-Public-punishment of Scolds in the Middle Ages.
-Wax figures of Statesmen, poets, artists, etc.
... Schiller - German dramatist and poet...b. 1759, d. 1805 ... Wm Shakespeare...b. 1564, d. 1616 (and first collectors edition of his works, 1623). ... William the 2nd...German emperor and King of Prussia
... Alexander the 3rd ...Queen Victoria, b. 1819 ...Empress Frederick ...The Prince of Wales ...Prince Bismarck ...Pope Leo XIII ...Boulanger ...Victor Hugo ...Napoleon 1st ...Frederick II - The Great ...Geo. Washington ...Gen. Grant ...J. A. Garfield ...Gladstone...The Grand Old Man ...Inspector Byrnes ...Execution of Marie Antoinette....scaffold and guillotine

I saw hundreds and hundreds of other sights that I could not stop to make note of.....Also, did make note of a good many more that I could not get in this book, for want of space.

This was certainly a grand trip.....long to be remembered by writer.

Wilbert Sterrett Myers, of Miami, MO, 22-years-of-age.


My Expenses to the World’s Fair, from Oct. 15, 1893 to Oct. 22, 1893

To Cash on hand = $44.95
Oct. 15 = 9.05
“ 16 = .95
“ 17 = 2.60
“ 18 = 4.25
“ 19 = 2.30
“ 20 = 3.00
“ 21 = 3.85
“ 22 = 2.80
To balance on hand (23rd) = 16.15.
Total: $44.95

The World’s Fair trip cost me $28.00....the 80-cents was for my trip up to Wakenda (Sunday, the 22nd)...............W.

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