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 Engineering’s Walter Schroeder Library, 500 E. Kilbourn Ave.
We stopped in to check out the world’s largest light bulb – well, at least it was in 1973 – because I have an unexplainable penchant for ridiculously over-sized items. (No, that’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 (that’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. 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 MSOE’s Schroeder library isn’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 Aug. 2, 2015
Chris Pretti and Jim Baker - along with Cole Quamma, Dan Boville and Max Hay - are now in the process of completing a documentary about the Green Bay punk scene entitled "Green Blah: the History of Green Bay Punk Rock." OnMilwaukee.com recently chatted with Pretti about the film, the Green Bay punk scene and its connections to the Packers.
Published Aug. 1, 2015
To celebrate nine decades of business, Bay View Bowl will host an anniversary party on Saturday, Aug. 22 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. with, aptly, 90-cent bowling, 90-cent shoe rental and 90-cent hotdogs.
Published July 31, 2015
There are so many people who, during their lifetimes, contributed to make Milwaukee the fantastic city it is today. Here are six of those individuals.
Published July 31, 2015
Last year, Jeremy Eineichner started a theater group called Boozy Bard, an ever-changing collection of actors who get together monthly to perform a Shakespeare play at Best Place at the Historic Pabst Brewery, 901 W. Juneau Ave. "We're doing Shakespeare the way it was meant to be done: Drunken and vastly unprepared," says Eineichner.
Published July 28, 2015
Exactly two years ago today, OnMilwaukee.com first reported that Alterra Coffee was changing its name to Colectivo. Do you still call it "Alterra" or has the "new" name stuck?
Published July 27, 2015
Last week, Fen - a 2-year-old pitbull - was most likely taken from his backyard in the Harambee neighborhood. His best friend and caregiver, Alana Wooldridge, would really like to get him back.
Published July 26, 2015
OnMilwaukee.com recently made the trek out to Panga and realized that it really wasn't much of a trek at all. Mike and Kristyn Eitel, who also own The Nomad and the BelAir chain, acquired the Oconomowoc-based Panga in early June.
Published July 25, 2015
Here's a review - and a video - of today's giant waterslide that stretched across four blocks in Downtown Milwaukee.
Published July 25, 2015
Bookworm gardens in Sheboygan is a magical place featuring creative, gorgeous gardens representing more than 65 children's books. It makes a great day trip for Milwaukeeans of all ages.
Published July 23, 2015
Some go to the Renaissance Faire for the turkey legs, but some go for the buffet of breasts.