April 5, 1941 Nigel Gresley, a railway engineer who made major contributions to the development of high-powered steam locomotives, died at his home in Hertford, England, at the age of 64. He was born in 1876 in Scotland’s capital city of Edinburgh and raised in the English village and civil parish of Netherseal. After attending... Continue Reading →

Civil engineer Marilyn Jorgenson Reece was born in the city of Kenmare in South Dakota in 1926. After graduating from the University of Minnesota with a bachelor’s degree in engineering in 1948, Reece moved to Los Angeles and started working for the California State Division of Highways (now part of the California Department of Transportation,... Continue Reading →

January 23, 1745 Civil engineer William Jessop – best known today for his prodigious work on canals, harbors, and railways – was born in the settlement of Plymouth Dock (now Devenport) in southwestern England. The significant engineering projects that Jessop helped bring to fruition include the Grand Canal of Ireland, a pair of canals connecting... Continue Reading →

November 27, 1975 Automotive engineer Alberto Massimino died in the city of Modena in northeast Italy at the age of 80. Massimino, who was born in Turin in 1895, developed a strong interest in mechanics at an early age. Massimino earned a degree in mechanical engineering from the Technical Institute at Fribourg in Switzerland. He... Continue Reading →

Mary Golda Ross was the first known Native American female engineer. She was born in the Oklahoma community of Park Hill in 1908. One of her great-grandfathers was John Ross, a longtime and widely renowned chief of the Cherokee Nation who helped guide his people through such tumultuous experiences as the Civil War and the... Continue Reading →

Jerry C. Elliott, a Cherokee-Osage Native American, began his career at NASA in 1966. He started out as a flight mission operations engineer and, in the years since, has risen through the ranks at NASA in progressively more responsible technical and managerial positions in such areas as spacecraft systems, hardware, software, scientific experiments, and astronaut... Continue Reading →

August 21, 1960 David B. Steinman, a structural engineer who designed a number of notable bridges across the globe, died in New York City. It is not completely clear where he had been born. Several sources indicate that Steinman was born in the town of Chomsk in the present-day Republic of Belarus in 1886 and... Continue Reading →

July 27, 1888 In Boston, inventor Philip W. Pratt conducted a public demonstration of an electric tricycle that he had designed and was built by the manufacturer and electrical engineer Fred M. Kimball. As part of his demonstration, Pratt took the editor of Modern Light and Heat magazine for a ride on the new device around... Continue Reading →

June 26, 1967 Civil engineer John G. Claybourn, who made significant contributions to river and harbor improvement projects in a number of countries, died Ann Arbor, Michigan, at the age of 81. He had been born in Albert Lea, Minnesota, in 1886. His uncle Ephraim S. Claybourn was an engineer who played a prominent role... Continue Reading →

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