History and Heritage

Related News Archive: 2012

Secretary's Column - One of My American Civil Engineer Heroes

In my introductory Secretary’s Column last month, I mentioned that one of my passions is American history.  Most recently, my historical interests have been directed towards the Civil War. So, it came as no surprise to my family last year when I started planning a trip back east to Virginia and Pennsylvania, with our entire itinerary centered around visiting historic Civil War sites. Visiting each of these historic locations was like a pilgrimage, where I saw the history that I had been studying come to life before my eyes.  But our trip to Gettysburg was particularly inspiring to me, for it was during this trip that I learned about a little known, but great Union leader who played an instrumental role in winning this historic battle by implementing his civil engineering know-how to successfully defend his position.   More »

Depression Era Introduction to Highway Engineering

In the 1940s the Nelson family's idea of a vacation was a weekend in Vista, California where  Uncle Emil & Aunt Olga’s family had moved many years after arriving in LA from Sweden in the ‘20s. This was a 120 mile drive from our “modern” home in rural San Fernando Valley. The route followed Sepulveda Blvd. (State Highway SR 7 if I correctly recall) to Manchester Avenue & Firestone Blvd. (US 101), then...  More »

2012 Annual History & Heritage and Student Fellowship Night

Over 100 ASCE members convened at the Center Club in Costa Mesa this past November 15th, to celebrate ASCE Orange County’s Annual History & Heritage and Student Night. Members ranging from students to Lifetime members gathered for an opportunity to recognize both the historical and recent achievements of ASCE Orange County as well as an opportunity to network.  More »

Pacific Electric Railway Bridge Over Santa Ana River

Back in July of this year I was contacted by a former Civil Engineering business associate, Mr. Phil Chinn, to see if I had any historical information about an old Pacific Electric Railway bridge over the Santa Ana River.  As it turned out, the subject bridge had been looked at by the Orange County Branch History & Heritage Committee back in 1984, as a potential Historic Civil Engineering Landmark. Mr. Chinn's call sparked some new interest in this bridge (to me) and I agreed to meet with him to look at the bridge site. More »

ASCE Orange County Branch Member Biographies and Oral History Program Overview, and Samples for H. George Osborne, P.E.

The History and Heritage Committee of the ASCE Orange County Branch has, over the years, made an effort to prepare biographies of it's Past Presidents and other prominent members, and when possible, Oral History interviews have been recorded and transcribed into permanent reference documents.  This article gives an overview of the OC Branch Member Biographies that have been documented and the Branch's Oral History Program.   More »

Back to the Sixties Again

In the mid-sixties I was assigned the role of lead engineer for production of the Orange County Flood Control District's (OCFCD) comprehensive report entitled “A Survey of Flood Control and Water Conservation deficiencies in Orange County, California.”  The report was completed in 1964 and fellow contributors to the report included Al Nestlinger, Don Talley, Bob Rende, Jim Brennan, and the late Fred Singer.  Orange County’s population had surged to more than 1 million residents. More »

Constructing an Historic Civil Engineering Landmark Plaque Monument

One of the responsibilities of the Orange County Branch's History and Heritage Committee is to nominate Civil Engineering related structures and facilities that are more than 50 years old to become Historic Civil Engineering Landmarks. Once a landmark is approved by the Branch and Los Angeles Section a bronze plaque is manufactured for display at a prominent Orange County location that is associated with the landmark. More »

John Wayne Airport Historical Civil Engineering Landmark

I had the opportunity to work with History and Heritage Committee to nominate John Wayne Airport as an ASCE Orange County Historical Civil Engineering Landmark. More »

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