The Devil in the White City: Murder, Magic, and Madness at the Fair that Changed America by Erik Larson, 2003
Another inventor, J. B. McComber, representing the Chicago-Tower Spiral-Spring Ascension and Toboggan Transportation Company, proposed a tower with a height of 8,947 feet, nearly nine times the height of the Eiffel Tower, with a base one thousand feet in diameter sunk two thousand feet into the earth. Elevated rails would lead from the top of the tower all the way to New York, Boston, Baltimore, and other cities. Visitors ready to conclude their visit to the fair and daring enough to ride elevators to the top would then toboggan all the way back home. "As the cost of the tower and its slides is of secondary importance," McComber noted, "I do not mention it here, but will furnish figures upon application."
I'm about a dozen books behind... I initially thought of ending every post with "This is probably the last post ever" (instead of the kiss-of-death "I'm going to have more time for this blog soon!") Maybe I should start doing that now. We'll see.