The Eiffel Tower, an emblem of Paris and a symbol of France’s economic strength has fascinated millions with its unique structure and interesting history.
Despite initial criticism, this architectural marvel has become a renowned symbol of the City of Love.
In this article, we dive into the fascinating Eiffel Tower facts, exploring its design, construction, and vital role in scientific developments.
Here are some of the historical facts about the Eiffel Tower:
1. During WWII, the Eiffel Tower was nearly destroyed.
In August 1944, as Paris faced the threat of destruction, the Eiffel Tower was targeted by the Nazis.
Hitler intended to demolish the tower with explosives. Fortunately, allied troops intervened in time and rescued the tower..
Despite the destruction caused by air strikes, the Eiffel Tower remained standing, symbolizing Paris’s resilience and serving as a reminder of hope in times of tragedy.
2. It is colored in a variety of ways.
The Eiffel Tower, composed of strong puddle iron, is protected from corrosion by a particular painting procedure.
The tower is thoroughly stripped, cleaned, and rust-proofed every seven years before being hand-painted.
Throughout history, the tower has donned various colors, including red and yellow-orange.
Since 1968, it has been painted in a unique shade known as Eiffel Tower Brown, which consists of three brown tones, the darkest at the top and the lightest at the bottom.
This color helps to mask air pollution and maintains a consistent look from the tower’s summit to its base.
3. The Tower Previously Housed a Post Office
One of the interesting facts about the Eiffel Tower is that throughout history, the Tower has hosted a variety of installations that have provided visitors with unique experiences.
Among these were Gustave Eiffel’s rooftop apartment, a newsroom for Le Figaro, a radio station, and even a theater!
One fascinating addition was the post office on the first floor, 187 meters above the ground.
It was the smallest post office in Paris, allowing visitors to send mail with particular collector’s stamps and the iconic Eiffel Tower postmark.
Mailboxes were conveniently positioned on each floor, allowing tourists to mail postcards stamped with postmarks capturing their journey through the Tower’s different floors.
4. The Tower served in World War 1
During the early 20th century, the Eiffel Tower witnessed remarkable innovations.
As World War I started in 1914, the tower gained strategic value.
A radio transmitter installed there disrupted German radio communications, preventing their way into Paris.
This important disruption contributed to the Allied victory at the First Battle of the Marne.
The tower’s wireless station allowed French troops to intercept enemy messages from Berlin, providing essential information during the war.
The Eiffel Tower’s use in wartime communication demonstrated its value beyond its iconic status.
5. The Summit Has a Secret Apartment
At the top of the Eiffel Tower is a special apartment Gustave Eiffel built.
He utilized it for experiments and to host guests such as Thomas Edison.
While visitors are not permitted to enter the apartment, there are life-like wax statues of Eiffel, his daughter Claire, and Thomas Edison interacting inside.
It’s a fascinating exhibit that looks into Gustave Eiffel’s personal life and relationships with prominent figures of the time.
6. The Eiffel Tower Can Move
The Eiffel Tower was built to resist heavy winds, but it can move slightly during storms, and you can see it move if the weather worsens.
Surprisingly, the sun causes the structure to tilt.
The sun heats the tower’s different sides, forcing it to tilt away.
This effect and the expansion causes the tower to lean slightly.
On a clear day, the top of the tower can move in a circular motion with a diameter of 15 cm.
7. The Eiffel Tower Grows in Size
The Eiffel Tower’s metal changes in size due to temperature changes.
The tower expands during the summer and contracts during the winter.
The tower’s height, made of puddled iron, may fluctuate by up to 15 cm during the year.
This is due to thermal expansion, which occurs when materials expand and contract in response to temperature changes.
8. Gustave Eiffel did not design the Eiffel Tower.
Gustave Eiffel, the founding father of the Eiffel Tower, didn’t design it.
It was designed by Maurice Koechlin and Emile Nouguier, two engineers of Eiffel’s Company.
To make it appear attractive, they collaborated with architect Stephen Sauvestre.
Eiffel funded the project and ultimately gained intellectual rights.
Although Eiffel is linked with the tower, credit for its design goes to Koechlin, Nouguier, and Sauvestre.
9. The Eiffel Tower is Married!
Did you know that the Eiffel Tower was “married” in 2007 to a woman named Erika Eiffel?
She was greatly attracted to the landmark and considered it a type of love.
This is called Objectophilia, where people develop emotional connections with things that are not alive.
Erika is a member of an organization called Object Sexuality Internationale, which helps people with similar emotions toward objects.
10. The Eiffel Tower is covered with the names of scientists.
During the Eiffel Tower’s construction, the names of 72 French scientists and engineers from the 19th century were engraved on the iron structure.
Today, visitors can see the names of famous people like Foucault, Dumas, and Perrier engraved on the iron surrounding the tower’s first floor, honoring their achievements.
11. Daring Stunts
Some people at the Eiffel Tower have attempted risky stunts.
In 1912, Franz Reichelt tragically jumped with a parachute invention and didn’t survive.
In 1926, Leon Collot crashed while attempting to fly a plane under the tower’s first-floor arch.
These incidents warn of the dangers of daring acts and the importance of prioritizing safety measures.
How long did it take to build the Eiffel Tower?
The Eiffel Tower took about 22 months to build, from 1887 to 1889.
What is the Eiffel Tower made of?
The Eiffel Tower is made of open-lattice wrought iron, weighing around 10,100 tonnes.
Was the Eiffel Tower always the tallest building in the world?
The Eiffel Tower was considered the world’s tallest building when it was completed in 1889, at 986 feet.
However, it only maintained this record for four decades, after which the Chrysler Building and, eventually, the Empire State Building set new records.
Are there replicas of the Eiffel Tower around the world?
Several cities worldwide, including Las Vegas, Tokyo, Brazil, Riga, and Sydney, have imitated the tower’s design.
What are some cool facts about the Eiffel Tower?
A Champagne Bar is at the top of the Eiffel Tower, where you can enjoy a glass of champagne while admiring the views.
What’s inside the Eiffel Tower?
The Eiffel Tower has three levels: the first, second, and summit.
The first-floor houses museums, a glass floor, exhibitions, shops, and restaurants.
The stores, the Jules Verne restaurant, and an observation deck are on the second floor.
At the Summit, there’s an observation deck and the Champagne Bar.
How many stairs does the Eiffel Tower have?
The Eiffel Tower has 1,665 steps! But don’t worry! You only need to climb 674 steps to reach the second floor.
You must take the elevator from the second floor to the Summit.
How many people visit the Eiffel Tower annually?
Over 6 million people climb the Eiffel Tower each year, making it a must-see sight for tourists in Paris.
What are some fun facts about the Eiffel Tower?
Some interesting, fun facts about the Eiffel Tower are as follows:
The Eiffel Tower has been painted in seven different colors since its construction.
The Eiffel Tower swings in the wind, expands, and shrinks with fluctuating temperatures.
Are there any facts about the Eiffel Tower for kids?
The fact that the tower has over 20,000 light bulbs used for its spectacular nighttime lighting may fascinate children.
Featured Image: Liu ziqi from Getty Images (Canva)