The Eiffel Tower was designed to be the entrance arch to the 1889 World's Fair (Exposition Universelle), which was held in Paris, France from 6 May - 31 October 1889. On 31 March 1889, a dedication ceremony was held at the Eiffel Tower. Engineer Gustave Eiffel led members of the press and government officials, including French Prime Minister Pierre Tirard, up the tower. The elevators were not yet working, so they had to walk up 1710 steps. Most of the group did not go all the way to the top; among those that did were structural engineer Émile Nouguier and reporters from the French newspapers Le Figaro and Le Monde illustré. When they reached the top, Eiffel raised the French flag. At the time of the inauguration, the Eiffel Tower was the world's tallest building. It is still the tallest building in Paris.
When I flew back home from Germany in January 2005, I had a one-day layover in Paris. I had the chance to do a little sightseeing, and I visited the Eiffel Tower.
Eiffel Tower opens
Exposition Universelle (1889)
History of the Eiffel Tower