Early Engineering in the American Southwest

by Steven R. Rae, (A.M.ASCE), Asst. Engr.; Envir. Improvement Agency—Water Quality Div., State Capitol, Santa Fe, NM,
Joseph E. Minor, (M.ASCE), Res. Assoc.; Dept. of Civ. Engrg., Texas Tech. Univ., Lubbock, TX,

Serial Information: Engineering Issues: Journal of Professional Activities, 1973, Vol. 99, Issue 2, Pg. 142-157

Document Type: Journal Paper


The engineering profession should be aware of its history and heritage. Civil engineers in particular should reflect with pride on the accomplishments of their predecessors. The Southwest is particularly rich in early engineering achievement. It was here that technology was put to its greatest test in helping settle and inhabit a region. Survival often depended upon the resourcefulness, technical capability, and perseverance of engineers who, through their work, provided an economic base or service where there was none before. Engineering projects examined are the Hohokam irrigation system and Pueblo Bonito, both constructed during the Prehistoric Period; Coronado's bridge, the Acequia Madre water supply system, and the acequias of San Antonio, of the Spanish Period; and transportation, water supply, and power production innovations of the Anglo-American pioneers.

Subject Headings: Irrigation systems | Hydro power | Water supply systems | Engineering profession | Engineering history | Systems engineering | Economic factors | Bridge engineering | Texas | United States

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