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Missouri—St. Louis—World's Fair

Sculpting the Land: George Kessler

George Kessler, Director of Kansas City Park, served as the chief landscape architect for the Exposition. He worked in concert with his on-site supervisor, D. W. C. Perry, to direct teams of surveyors who produced topographical maps, coding the land with numbered wooden stakes placed at 50-foot intervals. From these codes, Kessler directed the immediate clearance of 200 acres of selected trees and underbrush, mostly elms and sycamores, whose stumps had to be blasted out with dynamite. His staff marked hundreds more trees for transplantation and use on the Fair site and constructed extensive greenhouses and horticultural beds on the Tesson Tract to supply Kessler’s sculptural vision.

1904 The World's Fair, Missouri Historical Society