At the time that the Eiffel Tower was conceived, the tallest man-made structure in the world was the Washington Monument, which stood 554 feet (169 meters) tall. Meanwhile, in Paris, discussions were underway for a fitting centerpiece for the 1889 Exposition Universelle (or World’s Fair) which would celebrate 100 years since the French Revolution. A competition was set up to judge designs for a tower that would be at least 300 meters (980 feet) tall, have four sides, and be constructed out of metal. The design submitted by Gustave Eiffel (though originally conceived by his employees Maurice Koechlin and Émile Nouguier) was eventually deemed to be the only one that was practical, and it was selected. The design was initially unpopular, both with people who thought it couldn’t be done and with people who thought the tower was an eyesore. The tower was built between January 1887 and March 1889 and opened to the public on May 6, 1889. The tower was immediately popular with the public and international celebrities, with Thomas Edison, Buffalo Bill, and the Prince of Wales among the earliest visitors. The tower was only intended to be temporary, standing only until 1909, but at that point, the tower had begun to be used for communications purposes as well as for tourism so it was decided to let it stand. It remained the tallest man-made structure in the world for 41 years, until it was overtaken by the Chrysler Building in 1930.