The 1964 New York World’s Fair opened its gates for the first time on this day. The fair featured over 140 pavilions and 110 restaurants. A total of 80 nations were represented and hosted by 37, 24 of the United States were featured along with over 45 corporations all spread out on 646 acres. The fair's theme was "Peace Through Understanding," was dedicated to "Man's Achievement on a Shrinking Globe in an Expanding Universe” and was symbolized by a 12-story-high, stainless-steel model of the earth called the Unisphere. It was built on the foundation of the Perisphere from the 1939 World’s Fair. Disney fans know that some of Disneyland’s earliest attractions had their start here including It’s a Small World (which was a salute to UNICEF and was featured in the Pepsi pavilion), The Carousel of Progress (then known as Progressland and sponsored by General Electric), Ford’s Magic Skyway (used as a prototype for the PeopleMover ride system and the large dinosaurs featured on the attraction are now part of the Primeval World diorama seen when riding the Disneyland Railroad) and Great Moments with Mr. Lincoln which appeared in the Illinois pavilion. It is said that the fair also provided many guests with their first interactions with computer equipment.
The Coinage Act is Passed with a Two-Cent Coin
On this day in 1864, US federal law changed the design of the penny coin actually authorizing the minting of a two-cent coin with the Coinage Act. As a result of the law, the phrase, “In God We Trust” was first minted on the two-cent coin. Later the next year on March 3rd, Congress allowed the Mint Director to place the phrase on all gold and silver coins. In 1956, “In God we Trust” replaced “E Pluribus Unum” as the nation’s motto.