Amazing images of the Eiffel Tower show its construction over two years

How many landmarks can you say you’ve actually seen the development of? Not very many, I would assume. Most of the world’s most important buildings have been here since, well, before us. Take the Eiffel Tower as it turns 128 years for instance…

The Eiffel Tower, which sits along Paris’ Champ de Mars, turns 128 years old this March.

From 1889 to 1930, it reigned as the tallest structure in the world.

Let’s take a look back at the Iron Lady’s construction, which spanned just two years.

The Eiffel Tower gets its name from its engineer, Gustave Eiffel, whose company designed and constructed the tower (Eiffel worked on the interior of the Statue of Liberty as well). Here’s an 1889 photo of him and another man standing near the top of the tower.

The Eiffel Tower gets its name from its engineer, Gustave Eiffel, whose company designed and constructed the tower (Eiffel worked on the interior of the Statue of Liberty as well). Here's an 1889 photo of him and another man standing near the top of the tower.

LIbrary of Congress

Source: Tour Eiffel

Construction began in January 1887. The design plans called for 18,038 pieces of wrought iron and 2.5 million rivets.

Construction began in January 1887. The design plans called for 18,038 pieces of wrought iron and 2.5 million rivets.

Wonderful Info

Source: Tour Eiffel

Approximately 300 workers were hired to work on the intricate structure.

Approximately 300 workers were hired to work on the intricate structure.

Public Domain

Source: Tour Eiffel

Thanks to safety precautions like guard-rails, only one worker died during its construction. In this 1888 photo, the tower’s first platform was completed.

Thanks to safety precautions like guard-rails, only one worker died during its construction. In this 1888 photo, the tower's first platform was completed.

Bettmann/Corbis

Source: ABC News

The plans also called for it to be built in just two years, in time for the 1889 Universal Exposition in Paris that celebrated the 100th anniversary of the French Revolution.

The plans also called for it to be built in just two years, in time for the 1889 Universal Exposition in Paris that celebrated the 100th anniversary of the French Revolution.

Roger Viollet/Getty

Source: Mental Floss

The Parisian government launched an open call for designs in 1886, and over 100 firms submitted. Eiffel’s idea was chosen unanimously, while rejected submissions including a lighthouse, a water tower, and a giant guillotine.

The Parisian government launched an open call for designs in 1886, and over 100 firms submitted. Eiffel's idea was chosen unanimously, while rejected submissions including a lighthouse, a water tower, and a giant guillotine.

Science & Society Picture Library/Getty Images

Source: Britannica

Locals called the metal tower’s design a “mast of iron gymnasium apparatus” and a “truly tragic street lamp.” The iron trusses allowed the structure to withstand winds, and the arches allowed for a height that reached 986 feet.

Locals called the metal tower's design a "mast of iron gymnasium apparatus" and a "truly tragic street lamp." The iron trusses allowed the structure to withstand winds, and the arches allowed for a height that reached 986 feet.

Public Domain

Source: Tour Eiffel

It was the world’s tallest structure until 1930, when the Chrysler Building in New York City surpassed it.

It was the world's tallest structure until 1930, when the Chrysler Building in New York City surpassed it.

Public Domain

Source: History.com

On time and under budget, the Eiffel Tower was completed on March 15, 1889, and the grand opening took place three months later.

On time and under budget, the Eiffel Tower was completed on March 15, 1889, and the grand opening took place three months later.

Library of Congress

Source: Tour Eiffel

Visitors came to marvel at its metalwork.

Visitors came to marvel at its metalwork.

Library of Congress

They could ride one of the tower’s five hydraulic elevators to the top. Each were divided into two compartments.

They could ride one of the tower's five hydraulic elevators to the top. Each were divided into two compartments.

Wikipedia Commons

Here’s a video from the Library Congress that shows a journey to the top of the Tower in 1990.

Source: Tour Eiffel

On a clear day, you can see 42 miles in each direction from the summit. Below is an 1889 photo of crowds standing along one of the tower’s balconies.

On a clear day, you can see 42 miles in each direction from the summit. Below is an 1889 photo of crowds standing along one of the tower's balconies.

Library of Congress

Source: “The Eiffel Tower

Shortly after its completion, electrical workers installed a few gaslights inside glass globes along the tower’s beams, as seen in the 1890 photo below. For the 1900 Universal Exhibition, 5,000 electric light bulbs were installed.

Shortly after its completion, electrical workers installed a few gaslights inside glass globes along the tower's beams, as seen in the 1890 photo below. For the 1900 Universal Exhibition, 5,000 electric light bulbs were installed.

Library of Congress

Source: Paris City Vision

Here’s a 1937 photo of a few workers replacing the lights.

Here's a 1937 photo of a few workers replacing the lights.

Electrical workers balance high up on the Eiffel tower in Paris to change the lights that illuminate the tower at night, Oct. 29, 1937.Horace Abrahams/Getty Images

In 1898, a radio antennae was added to the peak, which added 66 feet.

In 1898, a radio antennae was added to the peak, which added 66 feet.

Public Domain

Source: Tour Eiffel

Today, more than 7 million people visit this iconic tower every year.

Today, more than 7 million people visit this iconic tower every year.

Pexels

Source: Live Science

128 years later, it’s one of the most enduring symbols of Paris.

128 years later, it's one of the most enduring symbols of Paris.

Pixabay

 

Impressive, eh?! Every building has to start somewhere though and everyone who constructs the building has to start somewhere too. Like on one of our Civil Engineering courses here at The Sheffield College. Click the link for more information.

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