Expo ’74 – USSR & Republic of China Pavilions

Expo ’74 in Spokane had unlikely pavilions.   I bought brochures for both Soviet USSR & Republic of China at the same sale I found the Stamp Document and  the Peter Max Stamp FDC Envelope.

Let us start with the Russian pavilion.   The cover states it is the Soviet Pavilion & has USSR Expo ’74 next to the hammer and sickle symbol.  The brochure is full of what I think of as propaganda on how wonderful life is in the USSR at the time.  Maybe since I grew up in the Cold War period I am a bit bias on the old USSR.  The Union of Soviet Socialist Republics was created in 1921 and was dissolved in 1991.  So, this is a little piece of history.

Expo '74 Soviet Pavilion Brochure

Expo ’74 Soviet Pavilion Brochure

This is a pretty big booklet so I put the pages in a slide show format.  Send me a note if you have difficulty with this format.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

The next brochure is from the Republic of China formed in 1949 on Taiwan.  In Chinese history, the Republic of China’s rule on mainland China (1912 to 1949) was preceded by the last imperial dynasty of China, the Qing dynasty. Its end was marked after the Nationalists lost the Chinese Civil War against the Communist Party of China (CPC).  Then the Nationalists retreated to Taiwan while the CPC proclaimed the People’s Republic of China on mainland China.  (Thanx Wiki for this information on China and USSR).

This is a lovely brochure describing their pavilion.

Expo '7r Worlds Fair Republic of China Pavilion Brochure

Expo ’74 Worlds Fair Republic of China Pavilion Brochure

Rep of China Expo '74 Brochure back page

Rep of China Expo ’74 Brochure back page

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Stamps Document & FDC Card Expo ’74

Paper items from Worlds Fairs are just as exciting as the dishes and trinkets you might find.  At one sale I found all the brochures, FDC stamp envelope, tickets and what is called a Stamps Document.

This is a folder and envelope that you can have stamped as you visit the exhibits.  In today’s world this seems rather old fashion but look how this preserved this family’s experience.

Expo 74 Stamps Document and Envelope

Expo 74 Stamps Document and Envelope

Stamps Document Expo 74 inside - official Peter Max Stamp and exhibit stamps

Stamps Document Expo 74 inside – official Peter Max Stamp and exhibit stamps

The inside page had places labeled for each countries and as you can see they visited each of them.  The Expo had Australia, Canada, Republic of China (Taiwan), Federal Republic of Germany (West Germany), Japan, Korea, USSR (Russia), USA, and Iran.

They used the envelope that they received the document in to gather more stamps ranging from Oregon, Idaho, Montana, Ford, Amtrak, Litter Exhibit, Whirlpool, Eastman Kodak & AT&T.

When you open the folder you not only see their exhibit stamps but also the commemorative stamp that was designed for Expo ’74.

The designer of the stamp was none other than the Peter Max. He is a German-born American illustrator and graphic artist, known for the use of psychedelic shapes and color palettes during the 60s & 70s.

The United States Postal Service commissioned Max to create the 10-cent postage stamp to commemorate the Expo ’74 World’s Fair in Spokane, Washington, and Max drew a colorful psychedelic scene with a “Cosmic Jumper” and a “Smiling Sage” against a backdrop of a cloud, sun rays and a ship at sea on the theme of “Preserve the Environment. (Thanx Wiki for this info)

Peter Max 10 cent stamp in Stamp Folder - Expo 74

Peter Max 10 cent stamp in Stamp Folder – Expo 74

Another memorabilia item from Worlds Fairs are First Day Covers. That is a postcard or envelope with the stamp cancelled on the first day of issue.  This treasure trove of items included one of those too.

Peter Max Expo '74 Stamp FDC (First Day Cover)

Peter Max Expo ’74 Stamp FDC (First Day Cover)

First Day Cover Envelope from Spokane Expo 74

First Day Cover Envelope back  from Spokane Expo 74

It does not seem that long ago since 1974, only 40 plus years. However, time will take its toll on these kinds of items and they are often thrown out.   This group is now safe in my Worlds Fair Mini Museum.



Expo 74 – the little City that could!

Spokane Washington was one of the smallest cities to host a Worlds Fair approved by the Bureau of International Expositions. Expo 74 had a slogan of “Celebrating Tomorrow’s Fresh New Environment” and motto of “Progress without Pollution”.  It was among the first fair in decades that did not focus on the space age, futuristic themes, or Utopian ideas of living.

My collection grew in the last couple of years.  Seattle is fairly close to Spokane and there is still a lot of memorabilia floating around.   For years there was even new old stock sold at a store in Spokane called the The White Elephant.   I just checked online and they bought all 280,000 left over pieces of “Fair Junk”.   He made his money back in 3 months and as the article states it was all gravy after that, even to this day.

Today we will start with the common Fair item.   Teacups!!

First up is the Tea Cup set with a multi view of the main pavilions and sights of the Fair. The center of the design has the Expo’s overall view.  It was located on Canada Island, Havermale Island, and the adjacent south bank of the Spokane River in the center of the city.  Around that are depictions of the US Pavilion, Washington State Pavilion, Skyway Safari, Oriental Gardens, the Ride over the Falls and Nations Flags.  Of course it had the logo, location and name of the Event too.

Expo 74  Tea Cup Set

Expo 74 Tea Cup Set

The second set is much more modern.  It has a less old lady style.   The cup is plain white with just Expo 74 on it.   The plate depicts The Great Northern Tower, United States Pavilion, Aerial Rides and the Spokane River and Monroe Street Bridge.

Spokane Worlds Fair Tea Cup Plate

Spokane Worlds Fair Tea Cup Plate

Spokane Worlds Fair Modern Tea Cup set

Spokane Worlds Fair Modern Tea Cup set