The Beacon of Paris
Named after its designer, Gustave Eiffel, the iron lattice tower was initially intended as the arch entrance to the 1889 Exposition Universelle which was to celebrate the 100th year anniversary of the French Revolution. The structure is 1,063 ft tall (or 324 meters) which includes the antennas and 3 levels for visitors. When it was completed, the tower was deemed as an eyesore for many and Eiffel had the permit to let it stand for 20 years. The city had planned to dismantle the tower but let it stand after discovering that the structure proved to have a potential for valuable communication. The tower has been a symbol of Paris and France and welcomes about 7 million of visitors per year. We visited the tower during the day in 2008. Luckily for us it was a bright and crisp morning in Paris. There were so many angles from which we could capture this grand structure. From afar, it did look like any Eiffel Tower images or pictures that are readily available worldwide. But being there yourself is another experience as you walk closer to the tower. The structure is massive. It was built with about 7,300 tons of iron framework with a total weight of 10,000 tons. There are 18,000 parts connected by 2.5 millions of rivets. We wandered around underneath this huge tower in awe. I thought it was quite an extraordinary achievement and an engineering marvel to be able to build this tower during that time. And I thought, why built something this important only to stand for 20 years? I cannot imagine the efforts to dismantle the tower after the excitement of building something this groundbreaking. I wonder how Parisians thought at that time; they probably never thought that the structure they once considered an eyesore had later become a symbol of Paris and France.
Hi Josh, did you know that at the opening of Eiffel Tower (1889 Paris Universal Exposition) there is an exhibition of Javanese kampong and gamelan music that influenced composers such as Debussy to compose music with the gamelan influence?
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