It is official: the Eiffel Tower has turned 130! Recently, Paris celebrated the Iron Lady’s anniversary with a special light show. So on 130th year of the Eiffel Tower, here are some things you perhaps did not have prior knowledge of.
It Was Supposed to Be a Temporary Structure
Did you know the monument itself was built for the World Fair held in 1889 in the City of Lights? Known in French as the “Exposition Universelle”, it was held to commemorate the centenary of the Revolution. There were calls for the monument’s demolition, which did not materialize. Soon it became the most popular feature on the city skyline and most visited monument in France. Of course, today around seven million people visit the Eiffel Tower on Paris city tours every year.
The Same Architect of the Eiffel Tower Was Involved in the Design of the Statue of Liberty
You may know the Iron Lady was designed by and is named after Gustave Eiffel, but did you know the same man was a part of the Statue of Liberty’s design works? While he was not the only one who was part of the works, the fact that a man from France was involved in the creation of one of the most iconic statues in the world, is a matter of great pride for the nation.
Adolf Hitler Had Planned to Have the Structure Demolished
Adolf Hitler ordered the German officer, General Dietrich von Choltitz, to demolish historical and religious monuments in the French capital. However, the military Governor of occupied Paris refused to follow the orders of the ruthless autocrat.
The Eiffel by the Numbers
Now, let us take a look at some fascinating numbers that make the Eiffel Tower a fascinating object.
- It cost 7,799,401.31 Francs to make the monument. We are unsure what the corresponding value is in Euros, but it does sound like a lot for the late 1880’s.
- The Eiffel Tower was destined to last 20 years. It was built not just to honor the French Revolution but also to show off the industrial might of the nation, but the use of it as a wireless telegraph transmitter eventually meant the structure was allowed to remain in place.