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American Civil Engineering History

The Pioneering Years


Edited by Bernard G. Dennis, Jr., Robert J. Kapsch, Robert J. LoConte, Bruce W. Mattheiss, and Steven M. Pennington

2003 / 568 pp.
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Soft Cover — In Stock

$76.00  List /  $57.00  ASCE Member

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Stock No. 40654 / ISBN: 9780784406540 buy


Proceedings of the Fourth National Congress on Civil Engineering History and Heritage at the 2002 ASCE Civil Engineering Conference and Exposition, held in Washington, D.C., November 2-6, 2002. Sponsored by the History and Heritage Committee of ASCE; National Capital Section of ASCE.

This collection contains 22 papers marking ASCE's 150th Anniversary with original history and heritage papers that document the emergence and growth of civil engineering in America. From John Smeaton, who first sought to raise the stature of the engineer to a professional level, to Benjamin Wright, who is considered the father of American civil engineering, to the origins and early years of the American Society of Civil Engineers, you'll witness the birth and early development of the civil engineering profession in America.

This early development is poignantly illustrated through excerpts from the diary of a young civil engineer visiting the United States in 1837. His diary provides a glimpse of the new frontier where America's rapid growth and expanding boundaries defined a unique engineering approach not found in England or continental Europe. The marvelous efforts of three prominent engineers—Latrobe, Jervis, and Meigs—in the design and development of water distribution systems in Philadelphia, New York, and Washington, DC, are documented. Transportation history is covered with stories of the Potomac Canal, the C&O Canal, the National Road, and the B&O Railroad. Important discoveries in material science, such as hydraulic cement and reinforced concrete, are also discussed. Preservation case studies include special insights into structural renovations to the U.S. Capitol and the geology of the monumental core in Washington, DC. An expanded module of civil engineering education history is included, along with the history of analytical modeling, and the development of testing and monitoring tools.