Sure, kids love trips to Disney World and water parks, but the beauty of the little people is they often are just as impressed with the smaller stuff. I am reminded of this again and again, most recently, when we stopped off at the Milwaukee School of Engineeringâ€™s Walter Schroeder Library, 500 E. Kilbourn Ave.
We stopped in to check out the worldâ€™s largest light bulb â€“ well, at least it was in 1973 â€“ because I have an unexplainable penchant for ridiculously over-sized items. (No, thatâ€™s not what she said. Ahem.)
According to Sarah Rowell, who works at the library, the lamp MSOE has was built by the General Electric Company in 1939 for exhibition at the World's Fair. It has a 50-kilowatt bulb, but its output is equivalent to 100,000 watts.
"Though now it is just on display, when lit the bulb could set a newspaper on fire from six feet away," says Rowell. "For cooling purposes the bulb needed to be shut off every 10 seconds. As you can imagine, it is an object of some curiosity and regularly viewed by those finding their way to our library."
This information is actually more interesting than the bulb itself, which is under three-feet tall. I guess I expected it to be giant, at least six feet, and so seeing it was a bit anticlimactic. My kids thought it was pretty cool, except they kept asking if we could turn it on.
Even more impressive to them, however, is the massive LEGO sculpture of Miller Park made by former MSOE student Tim Kaebisch. It features approximately 35,000 LEGO blocks (thatâ€™s $7,500 worth!), including a retractable roof, and it took him six years to build.
The model, which was not anticlimactic in the least, will be at the Shroeder Library through Feb. 13, 2013.
We also enjoyed the display that pays tribute to Christopher Latham Sholes, a Milwaukeean who invented the modern typewriter / QWERTY keyboard.Â The display features vintage typewriters, along with black-and-white photos of famous writers from Dorothy Parker to William Faulkner composing on them.
The second floor of MSOEâ€™s Schroeder library isnâ€™t an all-day event, but if you find yourself in the neighborhood, duck in for some interesting Milwaukee quirk and history.
No Talkbacks for this article.
Post your comment/review now
Disclaimer: Please note that Facebook comments are posted through Facebook and cannot be approved, edited or declined by OnMilwaukee.com. The opinions expressed in Facebook comments do not necessarily reflect those of OnMilwaukee.com or its staff.
Recent Articles & Blogs by Molly Snyder
Published May 23, 2016
Reinventing ourselves takes a lot of guts, something all five of these women - who switched careers at the age of 40 or older - have plenty of. Some left the corporate world, some joined it, but all of them share one thing in common: they are now closer to their True Norths.
Published May 20, 2016
Paul Hepp will launch his new brewery-and history-tours-by-bus business that's simply called Fun Beer Tours on Friday, May 20. Hepp says Fun Beer Tours is a mix of his two passions: craft beer and local brewery history.
Published May 19, 2016
It was a rollicking soft opening tonight at Urban Bay View, 2301 S. Logan St., the second business venture of Paul Jonas, who also owns Tonic Tavern, and is managed by longtime Tonic bartender and bellweather of the service industry, Paul "PK" Kennedy.
Published May 18, 2016
Harley-Davidson launched a new concept in Milwaukee, Portland and Los Angeles today: a pop-up bike share that gives riders the chance to test out the new Dark Custom Harley-Davidson Roadster. In Milwaukee, the pop-up popped up in the Third Ward on Broadway.
Published May 18, 2016
Josh Silberman, who grew up on Milwaukee's North Shore, knew at a young age that he wanted to have a career in film and television in Los Angeles. He was partially inspired by his cousin, the great Gene Wilder, and partly by his own love of adventure and travel.
Published May 17, 2016
In late May, Sprecher Brewing Company will introduce three new "hard sodas": Hard Cherry Cola, Hard Orange Cream and Hard Cola. The local brewery already offers Hard Root Beer, Hard Ginger Ale and Hard Apple Pie.
Published May 16, 2016
New Orleans jazz musician Trombone Shorty created an inspiring children's picture book based on his own life that documents his musical journey and his determination to make his dreams come true as a musician.
Published May 15, 2016
Some very talented and influential people have graduated from Shorewood High School (writes the author of this blog who also graduated from Shorewood High School), and in their honor the district will confer on a few former Greyhounds a Tradition of Excellence Award.
Published May 14, 2016
After a year of hard work, Paul Jonas is ready to share his new bar, Urban Bay View, 2301 S. Logan Ave., with the public.
Published May 14, 2016
Coffee + vodka = delicious. Who knew? Well, apparently Central Standard Distillery and Anodyne Coffee did.