Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 74.djvu/109

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THE

 

POPULAR SCIENCE

 

MONTHLY



FEBRUARY, 1909



THE NATIONAL EXPOSITION AT RIO DE JANEIRO
By Professor ROBERT DeC. WARD
HARVARD UNIVERSITY

A MONTH later than the date originally set for its opening, the first National Exposition of Brazil was officially inaugurated on August 11. Patriotic pride in the gratifying evidence which the exhibits give of Brazilian arts and industries, and of Brazilian progress, is the dominant note everywhere. As one of the leading newspapers of Rio has enthusiastically said:

The one feeling that every one has in his heart is an immense satisfaction, an overwhelming patriotic joy, as he sees this splendid exposition which gives evidence of our national capacity for work, and of our national vitality.

In his opening address, the president of the exposition commission referred to the important event in the history of Brazil which the exposition commemorates, viz., the opening of the Brazilian ports to the commerce of the world, one hundred years ago (January 28, 1808), and to the desire of the present government to bring together, on this centennial anniversary, the evidence of Brazilian progress in the last one hundred years. There have, it is true, been previous exhibitions, on a small scale, along similar lines. Thus, the Brazilian exhibits which were sent to London in 1862; to Vienna in 1873; to the Centennial in 1876; to Paris in 1889; to Chicago in 1893, and to St. Louis, were previously collected and open to the public in Rio. But the present exposition is far more representative and more complete than any of these others. Every one of the twenty states of Brazil is here represented, as well as the Federal District of Rio de Janeiro and the territory of Acre, "that precious piece of land recently added to our national demain," as one newspaper characteristically puts it, and goes on to say, "All the cells of our national organism here palpitate