About Charles Alton Ellis
Charles Alton Ellis (1876–1949) was a professor, structural engineer and mathematician who was chiefly responsible for the structural design of the Golden Gate Bridge. Because of a dispute with Joseph Strauss, he was not recognized for his work when the bridge opened in 1937.
Ellis was born in Parkman, Maine in 1876 and earned a degree in mathematics from Wesleyan University and a graduate certificate in engineering (C.E.) from the University of Illinois. During his career, he was a professor at the University of Michigan, the University of Illinois, and Purdue University.
A dispute over the time it was taking to complete the design, along with the number of telegrams Ellis was using to discuss the design with Leon Moisseiff, led Strauss to accuse Ellis of wasting time and money and to dismiss him from the project. The copy of the engineering drawings for the Golden Gate Bridge on file at the Library of Congress is signed by Ellis, but the plaque placed on the bridge in 1937 did not give him any credit.
As of May 10, 2007, Ellis was officially given recognition for his part in the designing process of the Golden Gate Bridge.