Thursday, June 9, 2011
I was thinking about that as I gazed at the Brooklyn Bridge last weekend, waiting to beginning celebrating my friend's S.'s big birthday. How many folks were walking, running, biking and driving over the East River, making their way to spouses, kids, friends, siblings, neighbors.
It's one of the world's most storied bridges, and rightly so. A feat of engineering by German immigrant John Augustus Roebling, it was completed—after Mr. Roebling succumbed to an infection just two years into the project—by his American-born son, Washington, with the able assistance of his wife, Emily Warren, after he himself fell ill with decompression sickness (or "caisson's disease," as it was known then). The bridge took 13 years to build. When it opened in 1883, it was the longest suspension bridge in the world and the first steel-wire suspension bridge. Confidence in the bridge's soundness was cemented when, a year after its opening, P.T. Barnum paraded his elephants across the span to promote his circus's coming to town.
Posted by lc_saint