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The electrifying fall of Rainbow City : spectacle and assassination at the 1901 World's Fair
2016
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Traces the events surrounding the 1901 Pan American Exposition in Buffalo, New York, describing how it was organized to bring millions into the region before the assassination of President William McKinley and a host of controversies reshaped the dawn of the century. - (Baker & Taylor)

Traces the events surrounding the 1901 Pan American Exposition in Buffalo, New York, describing how it was organized to bring millions into the region before the assassination of President William McKinley and a host of controversies reshaped the dawn ofthe century. - (Baker & Taylor)

"The 1901 Pan American Exposition in Buffalo, meant to herald the twentieth century, went tragically, spectacularly, awry. In 1901, Buffalo, New York, the eighth biggest city in America, wanted to launch the new century with the Pan American Exposition. It would showcase the Western hemisphere and bring millions of people to western New York. With Niagara Falls as a drawing card and with stunning colors and electric lights, promoters believed it would be bigger, better, and--literally--more brilliant than Chicago's White City of 1893. Weaving together narratives of both notorious and forgotten figures, Margaret Creighton unveils the fair's big tragedy and its lesser-known scandals. From a deranged laborer who stalked and shot President William McKinley to a sixty-year-old woman who rode a barrel over Niagara Falls, to two astonishing acts--a little person and an elephant--who turned the tables on their duplicitous manager, Creighton reveals the myriad power struggles that would personify modern America. The Buffalo fair announced the new century, but in ways nobody expected"--Provided by publisher. - (Baker & Taylor)

The author describes shocking events that occurred at Buffalo's 1901 World's Fair, including the assassination of President William McKinley, Annie Taylor's attempt to ride a barrel over Niagara Falls, the performance of Geronimo, the made-up story about the kidnapping of two Midway performers, and the attempted electrocution of an elephant. Annotation ©2016 Ringgold, Inc., Portland, OR (protoview.com) - (Book News)

In 1901, Buffalo was the eighth-largest city in the United States, and its leaders had big dreams. They would host a world’s fair, showcasing the Americas, and bring millions of people to western New York. With nearby Niagara Falls as a drawing card and with stunning colors and electric lights, they hoped the fair would be more popular and more brilliant, literally, than Chicago’s White City of 1893.The Exposition opened with fanfare; its wonders, both strange and magnificent, dazzled the public. Then tragedy struck. In the early autumn of 1901, an assassin stalked the fairgrounds, waiting for President William McKinley. That was shocking enough, but there were more surprises in store. A female daredevil captivated crowds by trying to ride a barrel over Niagara Falls. Apache leader Geronimo startled visitors with a controversial performance. And a showman called the Animal King, the self-proclaimed star of the Midway, announced that one of his acts, the smallest woman in the world and the fair’s “mascot,” had been kidnapped. Then he staged the attempted electrocution of an elephant.In this extraordinary account, Margaret S. Creighton lifts the curtain on the assassination of McKinley as well as on the fair’s lesser-known battles, involving both notorious and forgotten figures. In a story that is by turns suspenseful, heartrending, and triumphant, she reveals the myriad power struggles that not only marked the Exposition but shaped the new century. - (WW Norton)

The Pan American Exposition in Buffalo, New York, meant to herald the twentieth century, went tragically, spectacularly awry. - (WW Norton)

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Booklist Reviews

Forget the Windy City and its 1893 World's Fair. Buffalo, the Queen City of the Great Lakes, was going to show upstart Chicago a thing or two when it hosted its own grand event, the Pan-American Exposition of 1901. The Pan-American opened at a time when major cities used such milestone gatherings to showcase their industrial prowess. Unfortunately, the Pan-American grabbed the spotlight for all the wrong reasons: President McKinley was assassinated while attending the fair, and all manner of mistreatment of animals and workers surfaced to mar the slick image Buffalo was banking on projecting. Creighton (The Colors of Courage, 2005) shines in her meticulous research and lively descriptions of the many characters who stood out at the Pan-American, including a cruel animal trainer, a charming young Mexican named Chiquita, and two stunt women who attempted to ride Niagara Falls in sealed barrels. This compelling slice of American history exposes capitalism's dark excesses even in the midst of a dazzling celebration of the nation's technical know-how and belief in progress. Copyright 2016 Booklist Reviews.

Table of Contents

Prologue 1(8)
1 Rainbow City
9(21)
2 Summer In The City
30(20)
3 The Favored Guest
50(24)
4 The Blood-Colored Temple
74(21)
5 The Emergency
95(32)
6 The Rise and the Fall
127(13)
7 Aftershock
140(22)
8 Freefall
162(26)
9 The Escape of the Doll Lady
188(28)
10 The Elephant
216(22)
11 The Timekeepers
238(37)
Acknowledgments 275(4)
Illustration Credits 279(4)
Notes 283(26)
Selected Bibliography 309(8)
Index 317

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