he 1939 New York World's Fair of 1939 was the first exposition to focus on the future and was billed as the "Dawn of a New Day". The Fair is fascinating on many levels; it asked companies to use their consumer products to tell the story of a future of prosperity and possibilies. The promotion of the fair was the work of PR pioneer Edward Bernays (who happened to be Sigmund Freud 1st cousin). Teaming with the greatest advertising minds, he told a pained a picture of the future as something enabled by science but didn't get bogged down in the messy details of it. Despite of the vocal objections of eminent scientists such as Einstein, Bernays managed to inspire an entire generation of sceintists to fulfill the promises of the Fair (including Carl Sagan who'll I'll cover in the days to come). Most inspiring to me is that the '39 Fair was dreamed up in 1935, at the very height of the Great Depression. That alone is a testament to the power of optimism.
As Wikipedia puts it, "The main purpose of the fair was to lift the spirits of the United States and drive much-needed business to New York City". It's story is a testament to the powerf of the optimism to affect the Future.