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Related Museum Links Preparations for the World’s Fair

Pan American Clipper at Treasure Island

ASCAP Cavalcade of Music at the Fair

Huff’s Sculptures at the World’s Fair

Other World’s Fair Exhibits

Dedication of San Francisco Airport

Mayor Rossi’s Labor Day Speech at Treasure Island

Aerial View of Treasure Island - 1994

Treasure Island — Environmental Hazards — 1995

Wide Variety Feature of G.M. Exhibit

Visitors to the popular General Motors “Progress on Parade” exhibit in Vacationland building on Treasure Island who expect to see only a showroom display of 1939 automobiles of various car manufacturing divisions of General Motors are agreeably surprised to find an interesting presentation of diversified attractions. Within the confines of a floor space larger than that of any other single exhibitor in the building, visitors move from one attraction to another with increasing interest and wonder. From admiring the sleek lines and luxurious appointments of the 1939 car models of the famous general motors line on display, they turn to the animated exhibits to take active part in the novel presentation of some of the latest improvements in styling and mechanical achievements of the modern automobile.


Crowds of interested spectators await a turn to try the new and improved gear shifts, where complete operations are displayed in cutaway form. Others are fascinated by what takes place in the hypoid differential when they turn the steering wheel with their own hands. The velvet but positive action of General Motors braking power in combination with an individually sprung knee action unit receives a well-earned share of attention. An interest in motor cars deeper than external appearances is evidenced in the appeal of those and other mechanical units which bring a new understanding of motor car values to a public which grows more discriminating every year. An exhibit of the General Motors two-cycle Diesel engines, but stationary and truck power units, holds the attention of the men, while their waves acclaim the improvements in the new electrical refrigeration displayed by Frigidaire.


Everyone gathers around when the research show presents its magical marvels of modern science. Under the direction of Robert Strauss, General Motors research commentators demonstrate and explain the wonders of the research laboratories which have given the world the scientific marvels we accept today as commonplace. Others are so new that uses for them have not yet been developed. Music and voice transmitted on a beam of light, cloth made from glass and from skimmed milk, glass made from sawdust, and piped light are among the unbelievable demonstrations performed and articles exhibited and explained.


A better understanding of the inestimable value of the work of the research scientist is carried away from this educational and interesting exhibition. A greater appreciation is felt of the scientific achievements which serve us so well today, yet which were in the formative stage but 50 years ago. A world enriched by the wonders of scientific research as applied in American industry is predicted for the future by America’s foremost scientists.

San Francisco Chronicle
May 14, 1939