Happy Birthday Eiffel Tower!

Henri Riviere, The Eiffel Tower: Five men at work on part of the otp floor at the foot of the "bell tower," 1889. Gelatin silver print, 3 1/2 x 4 3/4 in. Musée d’Orsay, Paris. Gift of Mme Bernard Granet and her children and Mlle Solange Granet, 1981. © 2012 Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York / ADAGP, Paris.

Henri Riviere, The Eiffel Tower: Five men at work on part of the otp floor at the foot of the "bell tower," 1889. Gelatin silver print, 3 1/2 x 4 3/4 in. Musée d’Orsay, Paris. Gift of Mme Bernard Granet and her children and Mlle Solange Granet, 1981. © 2012 Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York / ADAGP, Paris.

Paris’s Eiffel Tower turns 123 today. When completed in 1889, it surpassed the Washington Monument to become the tallest man-made structure in the world (until 1930 when the Chrysler Building joined the scene in New York City.) Photos of the tower by Henri Rivière like this one, some of the first ever taken of the structure, are currently on view in our Snapshot exhibition.