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Museum of Science and Industry: Standing Exhibits September 1, 2006

Posted by gregquill in Uncategorized.


The Museum of Science and Industry is one of my favorites in the world. It’s home is the former Palace of Fine Arts, the last permanent building from the Chicago World’s Fair / (Christopher) Columbian Exposition of 1893. It was designed to be America’s first interactive, “hands-on” museum, to enable the visitor to understand as much as possible what he was experiencing.

This is the main hall, with a 727 airplane above the Spirit of America jet car, next to a full-sized bi-plane, over a steam locomotive, all in front of a huge running model railroad. What’s NOT to like?!

Spirit & 727 Posted by Picasa

This is the Spirit of America jet car, built and operated by Craig Breedlove to establish a 600 mph land speed record in 1965 at the Salt Flats in Utah. My friend Mark and I spent hours in high school sketching, discussing and dreaming about such things.

Spirit of America
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Here is another view of the Spirit:

Craig Breedlove’s Jet Car Posted by Picasa

This display is the training equipment for Apollo crews and the moon mission. The astronauts trained on this gear before riding the Saturn 5.

Posted by Picasa

The museum also has the Command Module from Apollo 8. Apollo 8 was the second manned mission of the Apollo space program, in which Commander Frank Borman, Command Module Pilot James Lovell and Lunar Module Pilot William Anders became the first humans to leave Earth orbit and to orbit around the Moon. It was also the first manned launch of the Saturn V rocket. They gave us the famous Christmas Eve reading from the Bible in 1968.

Here is a shot of the museum’s model railroad. The current layout was opened in 2004, replacing the one which was there for 60 years. The new one covers 3,500 square feet. It can have 34 operating trains at once. The old layout was in O scale (48:1) ; this one is HO (87:1), so a lot more scenery and trains can fit in the same place as the old layout.

Model Railroad Posted by Picasa

The Museum has much, much more including a working dairy farm and the U-505 submarine exhibit. If you’re coming to Chicago, you should make the time to see it!

At least a week…



1. kenju - September 1, 2006

I WISH I were going to be in Chicago. I love stuff like that!

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