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Mass Entertainment
The Rise of Mass Entertainment
The World Series
The Circus
The World's Fair
Coney Island
Test Your Knowledge Test Your Knowledge Projects Projects Links Links Additional Reading Additional Reading

Choose one or more of the projects below to make your own connections to mass entertainment in the early years of the 20th century. Each project can be completed by an individual student or by a small group.

Multimedia Presentation
Gather images from the Internet and the article "Coney Island." Use the images to create a multimedia presentation of early-20th-century amusement parks. Write short descriptions to accompany each image. You may want to include the following in your descriptions:

  • years during which each amusement park was in operation
  • price of admission
  • famous rides at each amusement park

Illustrated Map
Use the articles in this section and your own research to create a map showing where the baseball World Series was held during the first two decades of the 20th century. Start by using your Internet search engine to find and download an outline map of the United States. Then, for each year's World Series, do the following:

  • List the names of the teams and when each team was formed.
  • Record the number of people in attendance at the games.
  • Include other interesting details about the series.

Option: use multimedia software to convert your outline map to an interactive map so you can add links to useful Web sites and images.

Short Essay
Read the article "The World's Fair," and use Web sites listed on the "Links" page to conduct additional research on the St. Louis World's Fair. Then write a short essay on the controversies surrounding both the exhibits at the St. Louis World's Fair and the competitions held at the 1904 Olympics, which were held in conjunction with the fair. Your writing should express a strong opinion. Take a clear position and support that position with references to details about specific exhibits and Olympic events.

Oral Presentation
Read the article "The Circus" and conduct your own Internet research on the circus in the early 20th century. Deliver an oral presentation in which you describe differences between circuses then and now. Answer the following questions:

  • How large were typical circus audiences in 1900? in 2000?
  • How much did a typical admission ticket cost in 1900? What would that ticket have cost in today's dollars? Find an inflation calculator on the Internet to help you answer this question.
  • What types of acts have been eliminated from circuses? What acts have been added?

Credits: Cy Young © Bettmann/Corbis; Roller Coaster © Culver Pictures.

Other Topics
Cave Art
The Parthenon
Chinese Healing Arts
Counting: Calendars & Cords
The French Revolution
Mass Entertainment
Life in the 1920s
The Environment

These topics correspond to chapters in the Patterns of Interaction series (McDougal Littell, 2005).