175 years of making sure things don't fall down

rpi history civil engineering noticeThe first civil engineering degree in the nation was created 175 years ago today at RPI. The school posted a notice announcing the degree on October 14, 1835. The notice also lists what was involved in various courses of study at the school. For example:

During the first 12 weeks, each forenoon is devoted to practical Mathematics, Arithmetical and Geometrical. This is a most important course for men of business, young and old. During the last 4 week of the Winter Term, extemporaneous Speaking on the subjects of Logic, Rhetoric, Geology, Geography and History, is the forenoon exercise. Throughout the whole afternoon exercises are Composition, and, in fair weather, exercises in various Mathematical Arts. ...
Students of the Engineer Corps are instructed as follows:
Eight weeks, in learning the use of Instruments; as Compass, Chain, Scale, Protractor, Dividers, Level, Quadrant, Sextant, Barometer, Hydrometer, Hygrometer, Pluviometer, Thermometer, Telescope, Microscope, &c. ...

That's a lot of ometers.

By the way, among the famous civil engineering alumni from RPI: George Ferris (as in, the Wheel), Frank Osborn (Fenway Park, Yankee Stadium, Tiger Stadium) and Milton Brumer (the Verrazano Narrows Bridge).

image: Institute Archives and Special Collections, Rensselaer Libraries, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute

Comments

Another of the more famous would be Washington Roebling (Brooklyn Bridge)

Say Something!

We'd really like you to take part in the conversation here at All Over Albany. But we do have a few rules here. Don't worry, they're easy. The first: be kind. The second: treat everyone else with the same respect you'd like to see in return. Cool? Great, post away. Comments are moderated so it might take a little while for your comment to show up. Thanks for being patient.

What's All Over Albany?

All Over Albany is for interested and interesting people in New York's Capital Region. In other words, it's for you. It's kind of like having a smart, savvy friend who can help you find out what's up. Oh, and our friends call us AOA.

Search

Recently on All Over Albany

Thank you!

When we started AOA a decade ago we had no idea what was going to happen. And it turned out better than we could have... (more)

Let's stay in touch

This all feels like the last day of camp or something. And we're going to miss you all so much. But we'd like to stay... (more)

A few things I think about this place

Working on AOA over the past decade has been a life-changing experience for me and it's shaped the way I think about so many things.... (more)

Albany tightened its rules for shoveling snowy sidewalks last winter -- so how'd that work out?

If winter ever gets its act together and drops more snow on us, there will be sidewalks to shovel. And shortly after that, Albany will... (more)

Tea with Jack McEneny

Last week we were fortunate enough to spend a few minutes with Jack McEneny -- former state Assemblyman, unofficial Albany historian, and genuinely nice guy.... (more)

Recent Comments

My three year old son absolutely loving riding the train around Huck Finn's (Hoffman's) Playland this summer.

Let's stay in touch

...has 4 comments, most recently from mg

A look inside 2 Judson Street

...has 3 comments, most recently from Diane (Agans) Boyle

Everything changes: Alicia Lea

...has 2 comments, most recently from Chaz Boyark

Thank you!

...has 24 comments, most recently from Erik

A few things I think about this place

...has 13 comments, most recently from Katherine