News of the Centennial spread mostly by
word of mouth. Large attendance figures were not realized until
the end of the summer and the fall. Still, the Centennial was the
most successful event of its kind, both in terms of attendance and
admission receipts, even with fewer exhibition days than any other
fair since London in 1851.
Total attendance will never really be known, since many visitors
attended on more than one day, but a figure close to nine million
is not unreasonable. The population of the United States in 1876
has been estimated at 46 million.
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