The collection is open to the public by appointment.
Eleonore Sunny Powell was born in North Dakota in 1910. During World War II, she worked in Los Angeles as secretary for the Armed Forces Radio. During the 1940s, she belonged to the Moral Re-Armament movement, which proposed that high moral behavior was the key to world betterment. She later married Foster Powell of Edmonds, Washington. In Seattle she held a series of jobs, including assistant to the foreign student director at the University of Washington, assistant to the superintendent of Seattle City Light and assistant to the director of operations for the Seattle World’s Fair (Century 21 Exposition). She passed away on June 5, 1995 at age 85.
The collection consists of one 12 x 12.5 inch, 30-page scrapbook pasted with Seattle Times and Seattle Post-Intelligencer newspaper articles documenting the Century 21 Exposition planning phase. The pasted newsprint clippings are arranged in chronological order from April to September 1960. A file folder contains additional loose newspaper clippings dated 1960-1961.
Topics include local coverage of groundbreaking ceremonies, architecture, design, marketing and development activities, construction contracts, celebrity visits and newspaper editorials. Newspaper photographs include aerial views of the fairgrounds and construction projects.
During the Century 21 Exposition (Seattle World's Fair) planning process, various Seattle locations for the fair came under consideration. Among these, the lower Queen Anne site which was ultimately chosen had been designated for a “civic center” as early as 1919. The Civic Auditorium (later Opera House) and the Ice Arena (later Mercer Arena) were built in 1927 based on that long-term plan. As the Century 21 construction projects got underway in the early 1960s, some of the oldest apartments and commercial buildings in the city were demolished to create space for the new fairground. Ambitious construction projects such as the Space Needle, Monorail and Washington State Coliseum were designed and completed in a relatively short 18-month time frame. Excited news stories and dramatic photographs of these new Seattle landmarks dominated the local press. Celebrities, politicians and dignitaries traveled to the Northwest for the first time to help promote the fair. When the gates opened at last on April 2, 1962, the throngs of visitors included thousands of proud Washington residents eager to see the exhibits, ride the Monorail and view Seattle from the top of the Space Needle.
The Museum of History & Industry is the owner of the materials in the Sophie Frye Bass Library and makes available reproductions for research, publication, and other uses. Written permission must be obtained from MOHAI before any reproduction use. The museum does not necessarily hold copyright to all of the materials in the collections. In some cases, permission for use may require seeking additional authorization from the copyright owners.
Eleonore Sunny Powell Century 21 Scrapbook, Museum of History & Industry, Seattle