The Encyclopedia Americana (1920)/Ferris, George Washington Gale
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Ferris, George Washington Gale
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|Edition of 1920. See also George Washington Gale Ferris, Jr. on Wikipedia, and the disclaimer.|
FERRIS, George Washington Gale, American engineer: b. Galesburg, Ill., 14 Feb. 1859; d. Pittsburgh, Pa., 22 Nov. 1896. He was graduated at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Troy, N. Y., in 1881. From 1883-85 he lived in Louisville, Ky., and from then on in Pittsburgh, Pa. In 1892 he conceived the idea of a gigantic revolving wheel which, in spite of attempts of his friends to discourage him, he built successfully in Pittsburgh and erected for the World's Columbian Exposition in Chicago in 1893. The wheel could hold more than 1,000 passengers, and during the exposition it was one of the great attractions. It was named after its inventor ‘Ferris Wheel’ and copies of it, modified as to size, are still used as popular attractions at fairs and pleasure parks. Consult Snyder, C, ‘Engineer Ferris and His Wheel’ (in Review of Reviews, Vol. VIII, p. 269, New York 1893).