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Object Name: Coin bank
Date: 1934
Related People:
Medium: Metal, paint
Dimensions: Overall: 3 1/2 × 2 1/8 in. (8.9 × 5.4 cm)
Description: Cylindrical metal can with inset flat top with open horizontal slot cut to facilitate deposit of coins. Underside has inset bottom with removable center. Exterior surface of can has printed scene of the Chicago World’s Fair. Inscription printed on can top: “MADE BY THE / American Can Company / at A Century of Progress, / CHICAGO 1934.” The bank contains numerous coins.
Credit Line: Gift of Jeanette Sarkisian Wagner
Object Number: 2016.45.1
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Marks: Marks: Underside of can stamped: “CANCO.”

Gallery Label:

This is a souvenir coin bank from the Chicago World's Fair, which opened from May to November 1933 and then from May to October 1934. With its theme, “A Century of Progress” the fair celebrated the centennial of the incorporation of the city of Chicago by examining recent technological innovations. Among the fair’s highlights were its array of colorful modernist pavilions and other architecture, a skyride and transporter bridge that shuttled visitors across the grounds, and the arrival of the German airship Graf Zeppelin, all of which are depicted on the bank.


The donor of these objects received these souvenirs as a small child during her visit to the Chicago World’s Fair with her parents in 1934. She treasured these souvenirs throughout her life, and kept them until recently when she donated them to the New-York Historical Society.