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Bigler, Brian J.; Mudrey, Lynn Martinson / The Norway Building of the 1893 Chicago World's Fair : a building's journey from Norway to America : an architectural legacy

Norway participates,   pp. 12-19 PDF (2.2 MB)

Page 13

n May of 1892, after Norway had decided to take part in the World's
Fair, a committee was established to plan representative exhibits. It
corresponded with the Fair's governing body at Chicago to work out
the details regarding Norway's entries. The Norwegian representatives
originally had hoped for a large "Norwegian Building" which would house
a number of its exhibits under one roof. After considerable negotiations,
however, this plan was scrapped. Time was running short, and Fair offi-
cials in Chicago did not allot enough space at the Exposition site for such
a sizable structure. According to an 1895 committee report:
The Norwegian commission opted instead to permit the erec-
tion of a meeting hall in the style of a stave church, which at
the same time could serve as the office for Norway. Applications
were sent to firms who exported prefabricated frame houses,
inviting them to submit bids for the creation of such a building,
which then could serve as a sample of their work. A sketch of
the building was submitted by architect W Hansteen, who later
also furnished complete drawings with estimates of construc-
tion costs. M. Thams and Co. was the firm chosen to execute
the work according to the drawings. Negotiations were closed
by contract in November 1892, whereby the Thams company
promised to complete the building in Chicago in February 1893,
for a price of 6,000 Kroner-freight from Norway and setting
up in Chicago at the committee's expense.'

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