VIDEO: Transforming the Skyline—The Elevator

National Association of Scholars

The first elevators were a curiosity. In fact, the very first passenger elevator stopped operating after just three years because patrons didn't trust it. Thanks to the innovations of industrialist Elisha Otis and others, however, the elevator was eventually embraced by the American public, permanently transforming the skyline of America's biggest cities.

How did Otis's invention and other elevator innovations change the public perception of the elevator? What role did elevators play in revolutionizing American architecture and city planning?

This event features Andreas Bernard, guest scientist at the Institute of Culture and Aesthetics of Digital Media (ICAM) at Leuphana University; and Stephen Nichols, author of "The Evolution of Elevators: Physical-Human Interface, Digital Interaction, and Megatall Buildings." You may also find links to Andreas Bernard's books by clicking here.


Photo by Unknown // Public Domain //  https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Elisha_OTIS_1854.jpg

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