Cufflinks, pair

Object Number: 
ca. 1939
Overall: 1/2 x 1/2 x 3/4 in. (1.3 x 1.3 x 1.9 cm)
Metal cufflinks with three-dimensional surface decoration of the Trylon and Perisphere, stamped on face: "New York / World's Fair."
Gallery Label: 
Irma Rappaport (born 1914), a Hunter College graduate working as a secretary during the depression years, gave these cufflinks to her husband Bernard Rappaport (1914-1994) while she was employed by the Exposition Souvenir Company. Acquiring the exclusive right to sell "novelties" on the fair grounds at Flushing Meadows, the company maintained eighty stands there and employed 325 workers, each day selling about $7,000 worth of merchandise, ranging from penny (three for five) postcards to $5.00 clocks. Mrs. Rappaport served as executive secretary to Mr. I. B. Ury, who ran the day-to-affairs of the business, which was owned by her uncle, Louis Katz. A veteran of the 1933 Century of Progress International Exposition held in Chicago, Mr. Ury relied upon Mrs. Rappaport for composing his correspondence, handling telephone communications, and other activities that called for skills that differed from his merchandising expertise in the company's corporate offices at Forty-third Avenue and Ninety-seventh Place in Corona. The cufflinks and key chain feature three-dimensional surface decoration of the Trylon and Perisphere, two iconic symbols of the fair, and the year 1939. According to a New York Times article commenting on the history of souvenirs, 900 vendors were offering 12,000 designs and 26,000 different products as souvenirs of the fair, ranging from "lollipops to pianos."
Credit Line: 
Gift of Irma R. Rappaport and Linda S. Ferber in memory of Bernard Rappaport
Due to ongoing research, information about this object is subject to change.
Creative: Tronvig Group