A contest was held to select the official emblem of the AYP and the winning entry was the work of Adelaide Hanscom (later known as Adelaide Hanscom Leeson). The artist received $500 for her contribution which one pamphlet described as follows:
“The figure on the right under the fir tree represents the Pacific Slope, holding in her hand a train of [railroad] cars, typifying Commerce by land. That on the left, shaded by the dwarf tree of Japan, represents the Orient, controlling Commerce by sea. In the center, with a background of the Northern Lights, is the figure representing Alaska, bearing a double-handful of gold nuggets, signifying the untold wealth of the North, meeting half way the commerce of the East and West, and supplying the wealth for both.”The emblem was deliberately not copyrighted so that it could be widely used in a range of promotional materials. The emblem was also varied with some versions of it seeming to interpret the rays at the top as the rising sun and not the Northern Lights as intended by the original artist.
One of the more unusual uses of the emblem was its enactment in a “tableau vivant” (“living painting”) at the culmination of a 1909 stage production celebrating and promoting the upcoming Exposition.
The Exposition was publicized in many different ways. Official publications were produced by the Exposition Corporation, and many magazines devoted cover and article space to the Fair in the years and months leading up to the opening. Publicity booths also promoted the Fair and the city of Seattle.
Railroads offered discounted fares to Seattle for the Exposition and used the occasion to promote further travel throughout the Pacific Northwest. Newspapers ran contests with trips to the AYP as prizes. Companies and organizations of all sorts used the Fair as an opportunity to promote their own products—including the Rainier Beer Co., in spite of the fact that the AYP was a “dry” Exposition. Also, long before the Exposition grounds opened, the AYP occasioned an outpouring of songs extolling its joys, though none of these achieved the level of popularity enjoyed by “Meet Me in St. Louis.”
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