The Eiffel tower, at a height of 1,000 feet, was completed in March of 1889. Not to be outdone, America began searching for the right man to create something so spectacular that people would forget about Eiffel's tower. The Chicago World's Fair was just around the corner and it was decided a man by the name of George Washington Ferris would build his proposed colossal metal wheel, America's answer to Gustave Eiffel's monstrosity. Ferris took a big risk, investing $25,000 of his own money as well as hiring a crew of engineers to assist him. The resulting creation, 250 feet in diameter with 36 cars each capable of carrying 60 people, was a huge hit at the fair with 1.4 million riders each buying a 50 cent ticket to enjoy the ride of their lives! Unfortunately Ferris' Chicago World's Fair sensation would be the only one built by the young engineer and inventor. He died tragically of typhoid fever at the age of 37.
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