signature feature of the 1889 Universal
Exposition, a celebration of the centenary of the
French Revolution, that is today the most popular
tourist attraction in Paris.
Facts and Figures
Designer and Chief
Contractor Alexandre Gustave Eiffel
Engineers Maurice Koechlin and Emile
Architect Stephen Sauvestre
Construction Time 2
years, 2 months, 5 days
Dedicated March 31, 1889
Total Height 1,063
feet (324 meters), including communications
Size at Base 330 square feet (101 square
pieces of iron and steel; 2,500,000 rivets
Metal Framework Weight 7,300 short tons
(6,400 metric tons)
Total Weight 10,100 tons
Eiffel's design was one of
about 700 submitted to the Exposition committee,
and was that committee's unanimous choice.
When the design of the
structure was made public, some 300 Parisians
signed a petition calling it "useless and
monstrous," and nature lovers were afraid
the structure would interfere with the flight of
birds over Paris.
The Tower was almost torn down
at the expiration of its 20-year lease in 1909,
but was saved because of its antenna, then being
used for telegraphy. It became part of the
International Time Service in 1910, and served as
an important military observation station during World War I.
Antennas atop the structure have been
transmitting radio signals since 1918, and
television signals since 1957.
The official website of the
Eiffel Tower is www.tour-eiffel.fr.
Alexandre Gustave Eiffel
World War I
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