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History & Heritage Committee Meeting January 25, 2014, Dallas, Texas

The committee meeting was in conjunction with the Committee on Advancing the Profession (CAP) meeting. This was the first time all constituent committees of CAP had a chance to meet face to face with CAP and explain their programs.

The Dalles Dam across the Columbia River was nominated as a National Historic Civil Engineering Landmark by the Oregon Section, ASCE. It was presented to the committee by Richard Wiltshire who recommended its approval. It is over 1.5 miles long with an “L shape” taking advantage of the underlying soil and rock configuration. It was suggested that the relevant Washington State section might want to be added as co-nominators since the dam is located on the boundary of both states. The nomination received a majority of the votes cast by the committee members. 

 Dalles Dam, Columbia River
 Dalles Dam, Columbia River

The committee then discussed the Oral History project for the year. Griggs presented a list of questions he would ask Delon Hampton about his life and career. It was decided Griggs would send the list of questions to Delon for his comments, review and suggestions. Once Delon agrees to the list they will be forwarded to Bernie Dennis who will conduct the interview with Delon in his Washington Office. Griggs will send the list of questions to the members of the H & H Committee for their information.

The committee had two nominations for the Civil Engineering History & Heritage Award that had been carried over from the previous year awaiting additional information. Allen Wren who has presented many talks on Panama Canal Cruises and had prepared a three hour video on the history and operation of the canal and Robert Reitherman who has written a book entitled Earthquakes and Engineers: an International History were nominated. The Wren video was reviewed by Dennis, Hull and Griggs. Richard Wiltshire had reviewed the Reitherman book for ASCE Press and it was read by Dennis and others. Based upon these reviews a nomination to present the Civil Engineering History & Heritage Award to Robert Reitherman was made, seconded and unanimously approved.

A summary of the meeting of the H & H Committee with CAP is as follows:

The new chair for CAP, Renee Schwecke, joined the meeting for about 30 minutes. During this time, such issues as committee membership and make-up were discussed. Ms. Schwecke mentioned that members could submit online applications for different committees. The online application is available in the Committee area of the ASCE website. Applications need to be submitted by March 15, 2014. In addition to discussing membership, it was pointed out that the HHC has always worked to ensure that ASCE is always aware of civil engineering’s proud history and encouraged the society to celebrate it.

After Ms. Schwecke left the meeting, committee members had a discussion regarding possible future landmark nominations including some possible international nominations. The meeting adjourned at 5:05 p.m.