In 1900 the Paris Salon awarded its highest medal to MIT Professor Désiré Despradelle (Department of Architecture, 1893-1912) for his extravagant design for a proposed monument “dedicated to the glory of the American nation.” The January Object of the Month exhibit by the Institute Archives and Special Collections describes Despradelle’s “Beacon of Progress” and the state of the Institute at the beginning of a new century.
The account of Despradelle’s design is taken from Technology Review, Vol. 2, No. 4, October 1900. A complete run of Technology Review is available in the reading room of the Institute Archives, 14N-118.