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Squire Whipple

Birthdate: (83)
Birthplace: Hardwick, Worcester County, Massachusetts, United States
Death: March 15, 1888 (83)
Albany, Albany County, New York, United States
Immediate Family:

Son of James Whipple and Electa Whipple
Husband of W. Anna Case
Brother of James Whipple; Cynthia Whipple; Bathsheba Whipple; Seth Whipple; Catherine Whipple and 4 others

Managed by: Private User
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About Squire Whipple

Squire Whipple C.E. (September 16, 1804 – March 15, 1888) was a civil engineer born in Hardwick, Massachusetts, USA. His family moved to New York when he was thirteen. He studied at Fairfield Academy. He graduated from Union College after only one year. He has become known as the father of iron bridge building in America.

He died March 15, 1888 in Albany, New York, USA and was buried in Albany Rural Cemetery, Menands, New York.


His designs were implemented in numerous bridges, both large through truss bridges, as well as prefabricated bowstring arch bridges, which became the standard design for Erie Canal crossings; using an economical mix of wrought iron for tension members and cast iron in compression. Another such arch is the Shaw Bridge, "a structure of outstanding importance to the history of American engineering and transportation technology."

Constructed after Whipple's death the Cairo Bridge's two 518 feet (157.9 m) Whipple truss spans, were the largest of that design ever constructed.


U.S. Patent 2,064 – Bowstring iron-bridge truss (1841)

U.S. Patent 134,338 – Lift draw bridge


A Work on Bridge-Building: Consisting of Two Essays, the One Elementary and General, the Other Giving Original Plans, and Practical Details, for Iron and Wooden Bridges (1847)

An elementary and practical treatise on bridge building (1899)

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Squire Whipple's Timeline

September 16, 1804
Hardwick, Worcester County, Massachusetts, United States
March 15, 1888
Age 83
Albany, Albany County, New York, United States