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Wonders of World Engineering

Part 11

Part 11 of Wonders of World Engineering was published on Tuesday 11th May 1937, price 7d.

Part 11 includes a photogravure supplement featuring some of New York’s Giant Bridges. It illustrates the article of the same title, as does the  colour cover (and see below).

The Cover

The cover this week shows the George Washington Bridge, one of the most recent of the huge bridges which are such a prominent feature of New York. Completed in 1932, the bridge spans the Hudson River between Tenafly, New Jersey, and Washington Heights, New York.

This illustration was later used as the colour plate in part 36 to illustrate an article on the George Washington Bridge.

The George Washington Bridge, New York

Contents of Part 11

Britain’s Biggest Ship Canal (Part 2)

Story of the Diesel Engine

New York’s Giant Bridges

New York’s Giant Bridges (photogravure supplement)

The First Thames Tunnel

Pioneering in Alaska and Yukon (Part 1)

Story of the Diesel Engine

The remarkable increase in the use of engines driven by heavy oil fuel [ie diesel engines], ignited by the heat generated by compression of air, has had an effect on engineering practice comparable with that of the introduction of the steam engine. This chapter is by C Hamilton Ellis.

(Pages 323-328)

Click on the icon to see a YouTube video on the story of the diesel engine produced by Shell in 1952 (part one of two).


Britain’s Biggest Ship Canal (Part 2)

The story of the Manchester Ship Canal, concluded from part 10. The chapter is by David Masters.

(Pages 321-322)

There is another article on the Manchester Ship Canal in part 26 of Shipping Wonders of the World, whilst the cover of part 28 shows the SS Diplomat at Eastham on the canal.

Pioneering in Alaska and Yukon (Part 1)

The gold rush to the Klondike River in the late ‘nineties paved the way for the railway engineer in the north-west of the American continent. Since the first railway in this region was opened, in 1899, several other lines have penetrated northwards towards the Arctic Circle. This chapter is by Harold Shepstone and is concluded in part 12. It is the third article in the series on Railway Engineers at Work.

(Pages 345-348)

The First Thames Tunnel

 The building of an underwater tunnel even to-day calls for great engineering skill and courage. A century ago Marc Isambard Brunel and the engineers who drove the Thames Tunnel between Wapping and Rotherhithe had none of the specialized mechanical aids available to the modern engineer. The Thames Tunnel is an outstanding example of work carried out without the scientific assistance and mechanical aids of to-day. The tunnel was built by Marc Isambard Brunel (whose son, Isambard Kingdom Brunel, was the famous railway engineer and builder of the wonderful steamship Great Eastern). The tunnel as built for foot passengers only and was opened in 1843. The tunnel is still used and electric trains of London Transport run through it every day. This chapter is by F E Dean, and is the first article in the series on The Romance of Industry.

(Pages 281-288)

New York’s Giant Bridges

The mighty volume of New York’s traffic across the East River is carried by a series of bridges which rank among the most famous in the world. This chapter describes the building of the Brooklyn, Williamsburg, Queensboro’ and Manhattan Bridges. The famous bridges that link the island of Manhattan with Brooklyn on Long Island and with the mainland are not only among the most famous in the world, but are also outstanding achievements in civil engineering. Brooklyn Bridge was completed in 1883 and at that time was the longest single span in the world.

This is the third article in the series on Linking the World’s Highways.

(Pages 329-340)

New York’s Giant Bridges: Manhattan Bridge

“MANHATTAN BRIDGE has a span of 1,470 feet between the two steel towers which support the massive suspension cables. The total length of the bridge between abutments is 2,920 feet and the width 120 feet. Two decks carry roadways, footpaths and railway tracks. The anchorages, in contrast to the towers, were built of masonry.”


(Page 336)

Manhattan Bridge

The Brooklyn Bridge

“BROOKLYN BRIDGE, at the time of its building, had the longest single span of any bridge in the world. Completed in 1883, the bridge and approach viaducts have a total length of 5,989 feet, or more than a mile. The two suspension towers were based on caissons sunk in the bed of the river. At a height of 118 feet, each tower divides into two Gothic (or pointed) arches, each 120 ft 6 in high and 31 ft 6 in wide, through which pass the carriageways and car tracks of the bridge.”

(Pages 334-335)

Lattice steelwork on one of the central cantilever towers of the Queenboro’ BridgeThe Brooklyn BridgeThe Brooklyn Bridge

New York’s Giant Bridges: Photogravure Supplement

“LATTICE STEELWORK on one of the central cantilever towers of the Queenboro’ Bridge, on Blackwell’s Island, in the East River. The tower is mounted on a masonry pier. The photograph shows how the cantilever construction is all above the level of the lower of the two decks.”


(Page 333)