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who tunnelled under East River, and that while Henry Hudson discovered the North River in 1609, he was the first man to pass under the North River from New York to Jersey City, and this in 1904 when conducting the president and directors of the New York and Jersey railroad." The other eventful remark of Mr. Jacobs' was made in 1905 where he was cornered by a reporter, "I'm too busy doing things to talk about them," was all the tunnel digger would say.
Charles M. Jacobs' crowning feat was the construction of a hydraulic shield which is a gigantic cylinder twenty feet in diameter and thirteen feet long and is forced forward by hydraulic jacks and rams. The shield has several chambers which have hinged doors through which the mud and gravel enter. This contrivance has forced its way through many a precarious condition, sometimes withstanding great floods of water rushing upon it through breaks in the river bed.
Mr. Jacobs is fifty-eight years of age and was brought to America by the late Austin Corbin who wanted to bridge the East River. The young engineer was even then prominent in England and had done work for the great Pearsons firm when they tunnelled under the Thames. He had also executed important commissions for that firm in India and New South Wales.
It is a sad fact that the two men whose implicit confidence in him gave him the
great tunnelling contracts in New York, W. H. Baldwin, President of the Long Island Railway, and A. J. Cassatt, President of the Pennsylvania system, passed away before the completion of their cherished projects, though both lived to see them well under way.
Mr. Jacobs has just secured the contract from the French government to design a tunnel under the Seine from Rouen to Havre at a cost of $10,000,000. The tunnel will be a mile long and will be a counterpart of the North River tunnel, New York.
Mr. Jacobs is about six feet tall, carries himself like a soldier, has a round, florid face, a heavy, snow-white mustache, fine-, ly shaped Roman nose, high, unwrinkled forehead, bald head, fringed with closely cropped hair, firm mouth, strong chin, and eyes like an eagle's. Health and strength are written all over his face, and there is about his manner a repose and quiet dignity that suggests the possession of an immense store of reserve force. It is this reserve force that has carried him through many a moment of peril, many a crisis in which only prompt and energetic action could prevent disaster. It is the knowledge of this immense strength and the cool brain that directs it, which has inspired in the men who work for him such confidence in their master that they will face unhesitatingly any peril when ordered by him, or will follow him into what looks like certain death.
HEN the late Russell Sage and George Gould gave the $2,000,000 order to Edwin Reynolds of Milwaukee, for the eight combined vertical and horizontal cross-compound engines, giving eight equal impulses to a piston throughout a revolution, that furnish the power for the Manhattan Elevated railway in New York, they turned to Mr. Reynolds for suggestions as to the manner of housing those 12,000 horse power monsters-the largest stationary engines in the world.
The great engineer who revolutionized the construction of the steam engine and who designed the great Allis-Chalmers shops near Milwaukee, recognized as models of convenience and economy, was travelling from Albany to New York when the question demanded his attention. Not until he reached the Harlem tunnels did he act, however. Less than fifteen minutes were at his disposal, for a committee was to meet him at the Grand Central Station. Drawing from his pocket a letter, Mr. Reynolds hastily drew in accurate, detailed plans for the power house. They proved entirely acceptable to the committee and the power
house was built from the pencil sketch on the back of the envelope.
Edwin Reynolds has always been a man of quick decision and quick action. When he was a boy, sixteen years of age, working on a farm in Mansfield, Connecticut, he left the plow at a moment's notice and accepted a proposition from a machinist, Anson P. Kenney, to learn the trade in his shop. Years later he suddenly left a lucrative position with the famous old engine builder, George H. Corliss, to go with the younger and more advanced builder, Edward P. Allis. Again, inside of a week's time, he conceived the idea of forming the gigantic Allis-Chalmers engine combination.
Mr. Reynolds has shown that he can act with expediency and grit. In the days of the Milwaukee riots, when "Uncle Jerry" Rush, Ex-Governor of Wisconsin and Ex-Secretary of Agriculture, made his reputation for nerve by appearing in the streets with a Gatling gun and quelling
a riot, Edwin Reynolds scattered a mob, led by an anarchist, that had raided some of the leading shops and attacked the Old Reliance works of E. P. Allis & Co. Mr. Reynolds met the gang personally at the gate of the works and with a fire hose, having one hundred and ten pounds of water pressure, drove them in confusion, without stopping to argue.
Mr. Reynolds is recognized as perhaps the foremost engine designer and builder of America. He has also built pumps that hold the world's record, notably the Milwaukee waterworks pump, handling 500,000,000 gallons of water every twenty-four hours. To recount his engineering feats would require a volume. He is hale and hearty at seventy-eight and is a director of many companies and associations and a member of many electrical and engineering organizations. He is a man of very affable personality and may well serve as a model for the emulation of the ambitious young engineer.
HILE not exactly the "Father of Skyscrapers," John F. O'Rourke, the young Irish lad who gained his education in Cooper Union, New York, has made possible the construction of the forty story skyscraper, irrespective of nature's foundation. O'Rourke has done many things the casual observer wots not of. He had laid the foundations of towering steel structures, dug tunnels and devised processes for "shoring up"adjacent buildings whose walls were threatened by the giant caissons sunk far below their underpinnings. O'Rourke applied the diving bell principle to the work of constructing a foundation and invented the wooden caisson. Thousands of tons of steel are erected with safety upon these
caissons and it is due to O'Rourke that New York holds the record of rapid construction of skyscrapers. This genius of subaqueous construction is digging the Pennsylvania railway tunnel under the Hudson river and depressing and
rebuilding the New York Central's terminal facilities. These two most significant engineering works, at present being pushed to completion, will go far to alter the aspect of transportation facilities in the Metropolis and with the practical part of the work Mr. O'Rourke will have much to do.
Mr. O'Rourke knows his New York: he was born and bred within sight of St. Patrick's Cathedral, of which he is now a trustee. He was designed by his parents for a legal training; but he had a purpose of his own to become an engineer. When he went to work to earn a living he determined at the same time to realize his
ambition. He attended night school at Cooper Union and graduated from the engineering class. The first work that exhibited his quality was the Poughkeepsie bridge, of the building of which
he had charge. This secured for him admission to the American Society of Mechanical Engineers in 1884. Then he began to undertake those burrowing works in Manhattan with which his name has since been identified.
He is not so absorbed in his work but