Image: Portraits of three women engineers: Margaret Rowbotham, Beatrice Shilling, and Margaret Partridge Beatrice “Tilly” Shilling, who left her mark as an aeronautical engineer as well as a motorbike and car racer, was born in Waterlooville, England. At age 14, she bought her first motorbike. By that time, she had also developed a strong interest... Continue Reading →

A pioneering railway officially began operations in the city of Liverpool in northwestern England at seven o’clock in the morning. In reporting on the first runs of the railway’s trains that day, the Liverpool Echo noted that “the carriages appear to be fairly well filled with passengers.” The Liverpool Overhead Railway, which originally spanned five... Continue Reading →

Sir William Arrol, one of the most renowned civil engineers of the Victoria Era, died at his home in the Scottish town of Ayr at the age of 74. “A GREAT BRIDGE BUILDER,” proclaimed the headline in the next day’s edition of the London Standard for the article announcing his death. The article stated, “Sheer... Continue Reading →

In northeastern England, a new bridge was officially dedicated. The Surtees Bridge, carrying the A66(T) road across the River Tees near the borough of Stockton-on-Tees, replaced a structure that had been built there in 1981 with two vehicular lanes in each direction. The original Surtees Bridge, while initially estimated to have a design life of... Continue Reading →

In the present-day Republic of Turkey, an underground rail line made its official debut in Constantinople (now Istanbul). At the time, Constantinople was the capital of the Ottoman Empire. The Tünel (the Turkish word for “tunnel”) is located at the northern shore of the Bosphorus strait’s primary inlet popularly known as the Golden Horn. The... Continue Reading →

Carl von Ghega, who established himself as one of the leading transportation engineers of the Austrian Empire, was born in Venice, Italy. (At the time of von Ghega’s birth, Venice was under Austrian rule.) His father was an Austrian Navy officer, but von Ghega pursued engineering as his life’s work instead. After studying mathematics in... Continue Reading →

In Great Britain, a longtime transportation era came to an end when the mail trains known as Travelling Post Offices made their final runs. “Mail trains have reached the end of the line,” proclaimed BBC News. “After more than 160 years of service, the Travelling Post Office – where post is sorted en route on... Continue Reading →

French civil engineer Alexandre Gustave Eiffel, who achieved international renown for creating the landmark tower bearing his name but also carved out a substantive legacy in transportation, died in Paris at the age of 91. He was listening to Beethoven’s 5th Symphony at the time. “Although Eiffel was known to America principally for the tower... Continue Reading →

In southeast France, Emil Jellinek took delivery of a pioneering type of automobile at a railway station in the city of Nice. The German-born Jellinek was a longtime Vienna native who first lived in Nice as an Austrian diplomat. After his diplomatic career came to an end, Jellinek continued to spend a great deal of... Continue Reading →

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