Schenectady in Schenectady County, New York — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
Whipple Bowstring Truss
An Example of the First Scientifically
Designed Bridge Truss
Commemorating the Contributions
to Bridge Engineering of
Squire Whipple, Class of 1830
A gift from the
City of Johnstown, New York
Reconstructed at its Present Location in 1980
Union College Civil Engineering Students
Location. 42° 49.087′ N, 73° 55.451′ W. Marker is in Schenectady, New York, in Schenectady County. Marker can be reached from Lenox Road. Touch for map. The marker is not seen from the roadway. It is mounted on a stone bollard in the middle of a footpath at the south end of the bridge. The bollard protects the bridge from vehicle traffic. The bridge is behind the distinctive round Achilles Rink on the Union College Campus. Marker is in this post office area: Schenectady NY 12308, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Site of the Home of Charles Proteus Steinmetz (about 700 feet away, measured in a direct line); Nott Memorial (approx. ¼ mile away); ALCo Site (approx. half a mile away); Ignacy Jan Paderewski (approx. half a mile away); Revolutionary Hospital & Continental Barracks Schenectady Police Department (approx. 0.7 miles away); Schenectady's Little Italy (approx. ¾ mile away); Ellis Hospital (approx. 0.8 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Schenectady.
1. Squire Whipple
Squire Whipple; Born 16 Sep 1804; died 15 Mar 1888.
Whipple was a U.S. civil engineer, inventor, and theoretician who provided the first scientifically based rules for bridge construction. His design of the Whipple truss bridge was the model for hundreds of bridges that crossed the Erie Canal in the late 19-th century. Before developing his design, Whipple worked for several years on surveys, estimates, and reports for the enlargement of the Erie Canal, and in 1840 he patented a scale for weighing canal boats. He later built the first weighing lock scale constructed on the Erie Canal. The invention of the steam engine required bridges which could support heavy live loads and this motivated Squire to turn his attention to bridges. In 1853, he completed a 146-ft span iron railroad bridge near West Troy (now Watervliet), N.Y.
Categories. • Bridges & Viaducts • Industry & Commerce • Man-Made Features • Notable Buildings • Notable Persons • Roads & Vehicles • Science & Medicine • Waterways & Vessels •
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on June 27, 2010, by Howard C. Ohlhous of Duanesburg, New York. This page has been viewed 2,457 times since then. Photos: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9. submitted on June 27, 2010, by Howard C. Ohlhous of Duanesburg, New York. • Bill Pfingsten was the editor who published this page.