Participation Announced


The American Express Exhibit at the Fair will offer a multitude of services to Fair visitors: a 54-foot replica of the Fairgrounds will serve as an orientation center, and Fair and travel information services will be available. The three-storied pavilion will be constructed mainly of white oak.

Artist's Rendering of Pavilion

SOURCE: World Press Announcement Brochure, NY World's Fair 1964/1965 Corporation, Oct. 1963

Excerpt of remarks made by Robert Moses, World's Fair President, on the occasion of the World Press Announcement Ceremony for the American Express Pavilion at the New York World's Fair 1964-1965, October 11, 1963:

Friends of the American Express and of the Fair. There's a good deal of significance in the location of this particular exhibit. it's at the main entrance -- a large proportion of all the people who come to the Fair will pass by here. And it has two main purposes: one has been emphasized by the previous speaker, and I suppose I would put that first -- to attract people from all over the world and get them to come here. This isn't easy to do and it takes an organization like the American Express to do it.

Well, that's one of the objectives -- to bring people here from abroad, and that's something the American Express can do superlatively well. There's another thing -- one reason we were so anxious to have this particular facility at this location is because so many people will come in here, and it gives us an opportunity to move over here the big model of the Fair that is now in the model room, so the visitors to the Fair can come into this American Express building and see it -- it's illuminated, it's a faithful reproduction and scale model. They can see what is in the Fair and they can make up their minds what they want to see.


Our World's Fair Pavilion Announced

ON OCTOBER 11 AMERICAN EXPRESS ANNOUNCED ITS OFFICIAL PARTICIPATION AS AN EXHIBITOR DURING THE 1964-65 NEW YORK WORLD'S FAIR.

Mr. Howard L. Clark, president of American Express Company, speaking at American Express World Press Ceremony at the Fair. Mr. Robert Moses, Fair president and Dr. Roberto de Mendoza, deputy chief of Protocol at the Fair, are at right.

Clark speaking at Announcement

THE CEREMONIES, HELD ON A CLEAR, WARM, AUTUMN MORNING, WERE ATTENDED BY A CROSS-SECTION OF AMERICAN EXPRESS OFFICIALS AND STAFF, FAIR OFFICIALS AND PRESS REPORTERS AND PHOTOGRAPHERS.

PRESIDENT HOWARD L. CLARK TOLD THE GATHERING THAT AMERICAN EXPRESS WOULD CONSTRUCT A THREE-STORY PAVILION AS A SPECIAL ADDITION TO ITS NETWORK OF OFFICES HERE AND ABROAD. THE EXHIBIT, COVERING 13,000 SQUARE FEET, WILL BE LOCATED NEAR THE MAIN ENTRANCE TO THE FAIR GROUND AND WILL HOUSE THE HALF-MILLION DOLLAR OFFICIAL SCALE MODEL OF THE FAIR. THIS UNUSUAL DISPLAY WILL ENABLE VISITORS TO QUICKLY ORIENT THEMSELVES AND PLAN THEIR DAY OF SIGHTSEEING AND VISITING.

AMEXCO'S PAVILION SERVICE AREA WILL CASH AND SELL TRAVELERS CHEQUES AND CONDUCT OTHER FINANCIAL TRANSACTIONS TO ASSIST VISITORS AS WELL AS FAIR EXHIBITORS AND THEIR EMPLOYEES.

"WORLD'S FAIR VALUE COUPONS," COMMISSIONABLE TO TRAVEL AGENTS AT 10%, WILL ALSO BE ON SALE AT THE AMEXCO EXHIBIT. THESE COUPONS, SELLING FOR $25 A BOOKLET, WILL BE VALID FOR ADMISSION TO ALL ATTRACTIONS AT THE FAIR AND TO A NUMBER OF COOPERATING ESTABLISHMENTS IN NEW YORK.

THE FIRST MESSAGE TO BE SENT AROUND THE WORLD FROM THE FAIR GROUNDS WAS ANOTHER FEATURE OF THE DAY'S CEREMONIES.

MR. CLARK AND ROBERT MOSES, PRESIDENT OF THE FAIR, JOINTLY PUSHED THE BUTTON OF A TELETYPE MACHINE CONNECTED BY DIRECT WIRE WITH AMERICAN EXPRESS OFFICES ABROAD. THE MESSAGE PROCLAIMED THE COMPANY'S PARTICIPATION IN THE FAIR AND LAUNCHED ITS CAMPAIGN TO ATTRACT FOREIGN VISITORS AS AN ADJUNCT TO ITS "TRAVEL AMERICA" PROGRAM WITH THE UNITED STATES TRAVEL SERVICE.

Amexcans overseas learned about the company's World's Fair plans via a special teletype message from Mr. Clark. Replies from overseas were also received before the ceremonies were concluded. Texts follow:

NY 012
TO ALL OVERSEAS OFFICES OF AMERICAN EXPRESS: 10/11/63
THIS MESSAGE IS COMING TO YOU BY DIRECT WIRE FROM THE SITE OF THE AMERICAN EXPRESS PAVILION AT THE NEW YORK WORLD'S FAIR 1964-1965. AT OUR CEREMONIES HERE TODAY, WE ARE OFFICIALLY ANNOUNCING OUR PARTICIPATION IN THE FAIR. BY THIS MESSAGE I ASK YOU TO ACCELERATE IMMEDIATELY AMERICAN EXPRESS' CAMPAIGN TO PROMOTE ATTENDANCE AT THE FAIR FROM ABROAD. BECAUSE OF ITS WORLD WIDE STRUCTURE, AMERICAN EXPRESS CAN PLAY A UNIQUE ROLE IN HELPING THE FAIR TO ACHIEVE ITS OBJECTIVES. THIS IS IMPORTANT TO BOTH THE FAIR AND TO US.
THE WORLDWIDE AMERICAN EXPRESS COMMUNICATIONS NETWORK WHICH BRINGS YOU THESE WORDS WILL BE AVAILABLE TO SERVE VISITORS ALL OVER THE WORLD IN TRANSACTING THEIR FINANCIAL AND TRAVEL BUSINESS. OUR WORLD'S FAIR PAVILION THUS BECOMES ANOTHER TRULY INTERNATIONAL OFFICE OF AMERICAN EXPRESS.
CLARK - PRESIDENT

LO 063
CLARK - PRESIDENT 11/10/63
MESSAGE FROM WORLD'S FAIR RECEIVED, DELIGHTED TO LEARN OF AMERICAN EXPRESS PAVILION. ASSURE YOU OF OUR ALL-OUT COOPERATION TO PROVIDE MAXIMUM ATTENDANCE AT WORLD'S FAIR FROM GREAT BRITAIN AND IRELAND.
ELLIOT - VP AND GM

AT THE SAME TIME, THE WORLD'S FAIR ANNOUNCED THAT IT HAS DESIGNATED OUR CREDIT CARD AS OFFICIAL CREDIT CARD OF THE WORLD'S FAIR 1964-65, AND THE COMPANY'S TRAVELERS CHEQUES AS OFFICIAL TRAVELERS CHEQUES.

IN HIS ANNOUNCEMENT STATEMENT MR. CLARK SAID: "IN ONE WAY OR ANOTHER AMERICAN EXPRESS HAS PARTICIPATED ACTIVELY IN EVERY UNITED STATES EXPOSITION SINCE THE CHICAGO WORLD'S FAIR OF 1893. WE ARE ALL CONVINCED THAT THIS WORLD'S FAIR WILL PROVE TO BE THE MOST COMPREHENSIVE, VARIED AND EXCITING EXPOSITION EVER TO TAKE PLACE, EITHER IN THIS COUNTRY OR ABROAD. THEREFORE, WE'RE GOING TO DO EVERYTHING WE POSSIBLY CAN TO HELP MAKE THE NEW YORK WORLD'S FAIR 1964-65 AN UNQUALIFIED AND UNIQUE SUCCESS, WITH MAXIMUM ATTENDANCE FROM ABROAD AS WELL AS FROM WITHIN THIS COUNTRY."

AS PART OF THE COMPANY'S WORLDWIDE PROMOTIONAL PROGRAM, ALREADY UNDER WAY, AMEXCO HAS INAUGURATED AN ALL-NEW SERIES OF THREE, FOUR AND SEVEN-DAY WORLD'S FAIR PACKAGE TOURS WHICH ARE NOW ON SALE AT ALL OUR OFFICES IN THE UNITED STATES AND ABROAD, AS WELL AS AT OTHER AGENCIES.

IN ANTICIPATION OF THE SUCCESS OF THIS PROGRAM, THE COMPANY HAS RESERVED 850 NEW YORK CITY HOTEL ROOMS IN VARIOUS PRICE CATEGORIES FOR EACH OF THE 360 DAYS THE FAIR WILL BE OPEN. THE COMPANY WILL USE A COMPUTER TO ASSIST ITS AGENTS THROUGHOUT THE WORLD IN BOOKING THESE ROOMS.

ALSO PREVIOUSLY ANNOUNCED IS THE SPECIAL TWO-WEEK SEASON OF METROPOLITAN OPERA PERFORMANCES IN CONNECTION WITH THE FAIR. THESE WILL BEGIN ON MONDAY, APRIL 27, AND CONTINUE THROUGH SUNDAY AFTERNOON, MAY 10. AMERICAN EXPRESS IS SERVICING AS EXCLUSIVE WORLD-WIDE TICKET AGENT FOR THE 16 PRESENTATIONS. 

Discussing the 54-foot replica of the Fairgrounds, are: Mr. James A. Henderson, vice president, American Express; Mr. Ralph T. Reed, chairman of the Executive Committee, American Express; Mr. Robert Moses, president of the New York World's Fair; and Mr. Howard L. Clark, president of the American Express Company.

Official view Model

SOURCE: GOING PLACES, November 1963; Photos: Ceremony Brochure, NY World's Fair Corp.


AMERICAN EXPRESS PAVILION

NEW YORK WORLD'S FAIR, 1964-65

A Project of

THE AMERICAN EXPRESS CO.
65 Broadway
New York, N. Y.
 
 

KELLY & GRUZEN, ARCHITECTS

GEORGE A. FULLER, GEN. CONTRACTORS

LOCATION: By virtue of its location, at the corner of the Avenue of the Americas and New York Avenue, diagonally across from the major point of entry to the Fair by subway and rail, THE AMERICAN EXPRESS PAVILION will be a key point for visitors wishing to orient themselves and plan their activities upon first arriving at the Fair grounds.

BASIC FUNCTIONS of the Pavilion will be to offer a complete American Express Banking facility and traveling counseling services for visitors; and also to provide a distinctive showcase and exhibit hall for the official scale model of the Fair, a 540 foot long reproduction of the exposition built at a cost of more than half a million dollars.

In addition the Pavilion will display by way of works of art and sculpture, graphics and film projection -- the history of the Company and the scope of its world wide services in banking and credit accommodations.

MAJOR DESIGN FEATURES of the 2-story structure consist of strong building mass' relieved with varying geometric shapes that express and emphasize the basic functions of the Pavilion as both a banking and exhibit facility.

Three sides of the steel framed building are enclosed completely with six-inch, vertical strips of white cedar. The southwest side, along a major pedestrian thoroughfare (New York Avenue) is enclosed with large expanses of clear glass, two stories high, with wood mullions of Douglas Fir, affording a panoramic view into the building. The view will encompass varying graphic panels and murals which will form the free standing wall that encloses the model exhibit area.

The Pavilion will rest on a concrete platform several feet above ground level. Concrete plaza steps leading to a spacious terrace platform, enclosed by a concrete will, will load visitors directly into the main entrance.

(more)

SOURCE: American Express Press Release, Undated

 

AMERICAN EXPRESS PAVILION -2-

NEW YORK WORLD'S FAIR, 1964-65

KELLY & GRUZEN, ARCHITECTS

On the outside, to the left of the main entrance and on the terraced platform, will be two free-standing graphic displays: a "Money Tree" sculpture with one million dollars net worth in international currencies laminated to the "leaves"; and a mosaic map of the world constructed of multi-colored chunks of plastic. The map will pinpoint the locations 400 American Express Offices throughout the world; the back of the map will contain a directory listing restaurants at the Fair and in New York that honor the company's credit card. Size of the map will be approximately 30 feet long, 14 feet high.

In addition to the Fair model on the main banking floor, a unique film projection system will be featured. A group of five coordinated projectors will create an endless variety of images, comprising photos of people, places and things on the 55 foot long wall above the banking counters. Images will move across the wall as they are individually illuminated from projectors lined at 11 foot intervals at ceiling height along the opposite wall.

The center of the banking floor which will be devoted to the Fair model will be enclosed by walls of varying heights creating a controlled area through which visitors will be guided in a direct route around the model.

The Pavilion will occupy 13,000 square feet of space on a 26,000 square foot site. Construction cost: $1,000,000.

CONSULTING ENGINEERS:

LEV ZETLIN: STRUCTURAL ENGINEERS

SYSKA & HENNESSY, MECHANICAL ENGINEERS

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