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Numerical Example.

482.6 X -f 348.4 y + 238.6 z + 140.7 w — 48 915 =
348.4 X + 280.5 y + 186.0 z + 111.4 ti — 37 167 =

238.6 X + 186.0 y + 146.9 z -\- 82.0 w — 24 484 =

140.7 X + 111.4 y + 82.0 z -{- 66.0 m — 11 760 =











— 48 915

— 37 167

— 24 484

— 11 760

— 47 704.8

— 36 240.1

— 23 330.5

— 11 359.9





— 1 847

— 296

+ 2 503

— 1 794.5

— 2 410.0
4- 2 550.1





+ 579
+ 3 128.

+ 609.2
4- 3 158.3



+ 2 927.9

+ 2 948.84

The coefficients for the first equation in Table 5, will be,

348.4 X 348.4 „^ ^
280.5 — r^^-^ = 28.92




238.6 X 348.4

140.7 X 348.4

— 37 167 —

= 13.70

482. 5
48 915 X 348.4

= 9.80

— 1 847


and, as a check, the last term

47 704.8 X 348.4

(-36 240.1-^^^"^-^^^^'^-^) =
^ 482.5 /

1 794.5

which should and does equal the sum of the preceding terms.

The roots are a; = + 58, y = + 103, 2 = -f- 27, and u = — 154.

The computations were carried out mainly with the use of the
well-known cylindrical slide-rule of Edwin Thacher, M. Am. Soc. C. E.,
and the "Millionaire" multiplying machine.

Although such operations are necessarily somewhat tedious, the
set of equations containing fourteen variables was solved by two
computers in less than 15 hours of actual work.



MENDES COHEN, Past-President, Am. Soc. C. E.*

Died August 13th, 1915.

Mendes Cohen was born in Baltimore, Md., on May 4th, 1831. His
family, previously prominent in Europe, came to America before the
Revolution, its first representative going to Lancaster, Pa., in 1773,
afterward serving in the war and, later, living in Richmond, Va.
Mr. Cohen's grandfather went to Baltimore in 1808. Two of the
family served in the War of 1812. The father of Mendes Cohen, a
banker in Baltimore, died in 1847, and the son, who had been under
the instruction of a private tutor, directly entered the works of Ross
Winans, the builder of early American locomotives. In 1851, he was
made an Assistant Engineer on the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad, and
served on the construction of the Broad Tree Tunnel ; then, having been
transferred to the Motive Power Department, he was engaged in the
adaptation of wood-burning passenger locomotives to coal burning.
He also worked out the method adopted for handling the traffic on the
10% temporary grade over the Kingwood Tunnel, a remarkable
achievement in railroad operation.

In 1855, when only twenty-four years old, Mr. Cohen had already
become known as an especially capable railroad official, and was made
Assistant Superintendent of the Hudson River Railroad. He was with
that Company until 1861, when he succeeded Gen. George B. Mc-
Clellan as operating head of the Ohio and Mississippi Railroad, first
as Superintendent and, later, as President and Superintendent. Soon
after the close of the Civil War, he was engaged, for a short time, on
special work for the Philadelphia and Reading Railway.

From 1868 to 1871 Mr. Cohen was Comptroller and Assistant to
the President of the Lehigh Coal and Navigation Company. In 1872,
he became President of the Pittsburgh and Connellsville Railroad,
which was subsequently consolidated with the Baltimore and Ohio
System. He retired in 1875 from official positions in connection with
companies, but continued his practice in Baltimore as a Consulting

Mr. Cohen is survived by his widow, Mrs. Jessie (Nathan) Cohen.

Mr. Cohen was a member of the Board appointed by the President,
in 1894, to report on a route for the Chesapeake and Delaware Ship
Canal. From 1893 to 1904, he was Chairman of the Baltimore Sewer-

• Memoir prepared by the following Committee: John Bogart and J. E. Grelner,
Members, Am. Soc. C. B.


age Commission. He was for twenty-one years the Secretary of the
Maryland Historical Society, serving for nine years as its President.
He was also Vice-President of the American Jewish Historical Society
from 1897 until his death. His acquaintance with history, especially
that of Maryland, was remarkable. He was a member of the Municipal
Art Commission of Baltimore from 1892 until his death. For many
years he was also an active member of the Board of Trustees of the
Peabody Institute.

During many years Mr. Cohen was a strong and influential citizen
in the city of his birth and long residence. He was consulted in all
matters of great importance, and his judgment, always given after
deliberate consideration, had great weight. He was a serious, religious
man; socially of the best in Baltimore, in fact, a worthy representative
of one of the old strong families of the United States.

Mr. Cohen was a man of strong character, with broad experience,
not only in technical and engineering matters, but also in well-informed
studies of affairs and conditions of business and social life. He was a
man of much reserve, wise in conference, ready to consider and give
weight to the suggestions of others, and did not hesitate to express
his own judgment and opinion with clear statements of reasons for
them. He was, therefore, a strong and valuable associate and adviser
in the direction of business matters. This was particularly evident in
the consideration of the problems arising in the affairs of a growing
institution, such as the Society was during the years of his close con-
nection with its management. He never lost interest in its welfare,
nor forgot the resjwnsibilities of a Past-President. He highly appre-
ciated the honor of his election as its President.

Mr. Cohen became a Member of the American Society of Civil
Engineers on December 4th, 1867. The Society, founded in 1852, had
been inactive during the Civil War, but was kept alive by a small
group of members, the officers elected in 1852 continuing their nominal
functions. In 1867, the Society was resuscitated, James P. Kirkwood,
one of the original members, becoming President in succession to
James Laurie, who had held the office from 1852 to 1867. Mr. Cohen
was elected to membership in that year, and, at the time of his
death, had only one living associate of those who became members
in 1867. The Society had only twenty-six members at the time of
his election.

Although then only thirty-six years old, Mr. Cohen had already
held responsible positions in railroad operation and management and
his well-informed judgment was at once of value in the building up
and judicious expansion of the activities of the Society. He served as
a Director in 1888, as Vice-President in 1890, and as President in



Died May 16th, 1916.

Elmer Lawrence Corthell was born in South Abington (now Whit-
man), Mass., in 1840, the son of James Lawrence and Mary Gurney
Corthell. He was educated at the South Abington High School and
Phillips Exeter Academy. He entered Brown University in 1859,
studying until the outbreak of the Civil War in 1861. At the first call
for volunteers, he enlisted in the First Ehode Island Artillery, Battery
D, and served in stations from private to the rank of Commander of
field artillery, until his return with rank of Captain at the end of the
war. As a soldier, he saw service principally in Virginia and North

At the close of the war Mr. Corthell returned and resumed his
studies at Brown University from which he was graduated in 1867
with the degree of Master of Arts, and Phi Beta Kappa honors.

In 1894 he received from his Alma Mater the honorary degree of
Doctor of Science. From boyhood it had been Mr. Corthell's aim and
ambition to study for the ministry in the Baptist Church, but on com-
pleting his university course, on account of his health, and the advice
of his physician to select a more active profession, he chose Civil Engi-
neering and entered the employ of the late Samuel Barrett Cushing,
M. Am. Soc. C. E., a prominent engineer in Providence, R. I., where
he practiced and did field work in railroad, mill, dam, bridge, city,
and other construction.

In 1868 Mr. Corthell was appointed Assistant Engineer on the con-
struction of the Hannibal and Naples Railroad in Illinois, now a part
of the Wabash System. In 1869, he was Engineer on the location and
construction of the Hannibal and Missouri Railroad. In 1870-71, he
was Chief Assistant Engineer, under the late Col. E. D. Mason,
M. Am. Soc. C. E., in the construction of the railroad bridge over the
Mississippi River at Hannibal, Mo. From 1871 to 1875, he was Chief
Engineer of the Sny Island Levee, 51 miles in length, on the east bank
of the Mississippi River. While engaged in that work he was, in
1873-75, Chief Engineer on the construction of the bridge over the
Mississippi River, at Louisiana, Mo., for the Chicago and Alton Rail-
road. The draw-span of this bridge was 444 ft. long — at that time, the
longest in the world.

In July, 1875, Mr. Corthell went to the mouth of the Mississippi
River, and from that time until 1880 was Assistant to the late Capt.
James B. Eads, M. Am. Soc. C. E., in the construction of the jetties

• Memoir prepared by the following committee : John F. Wallace and J. A. Ocker-
son, Past-Presidents, Am. Soc. C. E., and W. J. Karner, Assoc. Am. Soc. C. E.


at the South Pass mouth of the river. On account of ill-health, he
came north early in 1880, and while convalescing, wrote his "History
of the Jetties at the Mouth of the Mississippi River".*

From 1881 to 1884, Mr. Corthell served as Engineer of the New
York, West Shore and Buffalo Eailroad Company, in charge of the
construction of that road and the extension of the New York, Ontario
and Western Railroad to connect with* the West Shore. For about
two years, during the construction of the West Shore Railroad, he was
assisting Capt. Eads and Col. James Andrews in their plans for the
construction of a ship railway across the Isthmus of Tehuantepec,
Mexico, and, after he resigned his position with the West Shore Rail-
road Company, from 1884-87, he assisted Capt. Eads in promoting the
Tehuantepec Ship Railway, taking charge, on the Isthmus, of the survey
of the route for the railway, and exploiting it by visiting various cities
in the United States, showing perfect working models of the railroad
and a ship being placed in its cradle on the rails.

From March, 1887, until 1889, Mr. Corthell was associated in an
engineering partnership, in New York City and Chicago, 111., with the
late George S. Morison, Past-President, Am. Soc. C. E., engaged in
the construction of railroads, bridges, harbors, and water-works. Dur-
ing this partnership there were constructed, the Cairo Bridge over the
Ohio River for the Illinois Central Railroad, then the longest steel
bridge in the world, bridges over the Missouri River at Nebraska City
and Sioux City, two bridges in Oregon, one at Jacksonville, Fla., and
water-works at Bismarck, N. Dak.

From 1889 to 1890, he was Engineer of the St. Louis Merchants
Bridge over the Mississippi River, having charge of the design and
construction of the substructure and foundations.

During the same period, from 1889 to 1890, he was also Chief Engi-
neer of the improvements at the mouth of the Brazos River, in Texas.

In 1889 and 1890 he was employed as a special Consulting
Engineer in charge of terminal work in the City of Chicago for the
Chicago, Madison and Northern Railroad, a subsidiary corporation
of the Illinois Central Railroad, — the Chicago, Madison and Northern
Railroad affording an entrance to Chicago from the West for the
Illinois Central lines; and also in connection therewith for certain
main and side-track facilities for the Atchison, Topeka and Santa
Fe and the Chicago and Alton Railroads.

In 1889, Mr. Corthell made examinations, plans, and report on the
proposed improvement of the harbor at Tampico, Mexico, for the
Mexican Central Railroad and, later, had charge of the construction
of the jetties as Chief Engineer.

During 1889 he was also President and Chief Engineer of the South-
ern Bridge and Railway Company, incorporated that year to build a

* Published in 1880 by John Wiley and Sons.


bridge over the Mississippi River, at New Orleans, and completed the
plans and specifications for its construction.

In the following year (1890), he made a personal examination
between the Great Lakes and Quebec, Canada, of the question of an
enlarged waterway between Chicago, Duluth, and other ports of the
Great Lakes and the Atlantic Seaboard, and wrote a paper on this sub-
ject for the Canadian Society of Civil Engineers* and the Western
Society of Engineers at Chicago.

In 1891 Mr. Corthell visited Europe, with several important objects
in view. As a Trustee of the University of Chicago, he examined six
of the leading universities and technical schools of Europe in order to
obtain information for the University in carrying out its purpose of
establishing, in connection with it, a great School of Engineering and
Architecture. As a member of a Committee of the Western Society of
Engineers, engaged in solving the difficult railroad problem of Chicago,
he examined in Europe thirty-five railroad terminals and complicated
situations. He also examined twenty-six European harbors to secure
special information for use in connection with his work at Tampico,
Mexico, and elsewhere. He also examined nearly all the subways
of the Old World, from Glasgow to Budapest.

In 1897, Dr. Corthell again visited Europe to examine a great variety
of engineering works. Many of the results of his various examinations
and investigations were published in the Engineering Magazine^ in
New York and London. The most extensive work done by him, how-
ever, during his two years in Europe, was on the subject of Maritime
Commerce, its past, present, and future. In August, 1898, he presented
the results of his work to the American Association for the Advance-
ment of Science, which held its Fiftieth Anniversary, at Boston, Mass.
The object of the paper was to show the development of commerce in
the half century to come. On his return to the United States he was
engaged as expert on several important works in the United States and

Dr. Corthell sailed for Buenos Aires, Argentine Republic, in March,
1900, where, for more than two years, he was engaged in solving prob-
lems for commerce and reporting to the Minister of Public Works.
Thirty-six different subjects were referred to him for investigation
and report.

During the winter of 1902 and the spring of 1903, he delivered
thirty-six lectures in thirty cities of the United States and Mexico,
on "Two Years in Argentine as Consulting Engineer of National
Public Works". These were delivered before universities and com-
mercial bodies, also engineering societies, etc., at the request of the
Argentine Government.

* Transactions, The Canadian Society ot Civil Engineers, Vol V, p. 32 (1891).


At one time, Dr. Corthell made an examination, reports, and
estimates for the Boston, Cape Cod, and New York Ship Canal.

The Governor of the State of New York, in 1894, appointed Dr.
Corthell upon the Advisory Board of Consulting Engineers on the State
Barge Canal, a position from which he resigned on account of his
Brazilian work.

During 1904 and 1905 he was engaged on extensive commercial
works in Brazil, at Para, in St. Catherina, and Eio Grande do Sul.

He represented the United States on the Permanent Commission of
the International Congress of Navigation and was an active and influ-
ential member of that organization.

Mr. Corthell was married, in 1870, to Emily Theodate Davis, of
Providence, R. I., who died in 1884, leaving two children, Mrs. E, S.
Dewey, of Gloversville, N. Y., and Howard Lawrence Corthell, a Civil
Engineer, of New York City. In 1900, he was married to Marie
Kuchler, of Berne, Switzerland, who survives him. He also leaves one
brother, Roland, of Boston, and one sister, Mrs. Annie C. Phipps, of
Wollaston, Mass.

The various International Engineering Congresses always found
Dr. Corthell an active participant, either in person or by im-
portant papers. At a meeting in Brussels, where all but six of
the seventy-one papers were in other languages than English, he pre-
]iared for the Department of State, which had selected him as a
delegate, a resume of the entire proceedings, which formed a volume
of 245 pages. The International Engineering Congress held during
the Columbian Exposition was suggested by him, and its success was
largely due to his work as Chairman of the Executive Committee
having charge of that affair. When the recent Pan-American
Scientific Congress, in "Washington, D. C, was contemplated, the
Department of State again called upon Dr. Corthell to aid in the
organization of the meeting, and he rendered valuable assistance in
making this affair a success.

After years of exceedingly active work, Dr. Corthell found his
chief satisfaction in the fact that his works had been beneficial to
commerce by sea, river, canal, and rail, and he could point with pride
to the results as having aided in reducing the cost of transportation on
land and water, to the benefit of mankind.

A prolific writer on engineering subjects, his printed papers fill
many volumes. Another of his activities concerned the establishment
of a civilian reserve corps of engineers, and he was one of the leaders,
if not the leader, in this project. After his election to the Presidency
of the American Society of Civil Engineers, Dr. Corthell had taken
an active part in the proposal to have the Society join the three other
National Engineering Organizations in the United Engineering
Societies Building in New York.


Dr. Corthell was a member of the following societies: American
Institute of Consulting Engineers, Inc., of which he served as Presi-
dent in 1915-16; The Canadian Society of Civil Engineers; The Insti-
tution of Civil Engineers of Great Britain; The Society of Arts of
Great Britain; Member d'Honneur, and Corresponding Member of the
French Society of Civil Engineers; The American Association of Civil
Engineers and Architects; American Kailway Engineering Associa-
tion; The Boston Society of Civil Engineers; The Western Society of
Civil Engineers, Chicago, 111., of which he was President in 1889;
Honorary Member of the Geographical and Statistical Society of
Mexico; American Geographical Society; The National Geographical
Society, Washington, D. C. ; Eellow, Royal Geographical Society,
London, England; Fellow, American Association for the Advancement
of Science; Honorary Member, Engineering Society of Portugal, The
Institution of Engineers of the River Plate, The Centre de Naviga-
cion Transatlantica, and Sociedad Cientifiea of Argentine; Franklin
Institute, Philadelphia, Pa. ; ■ American Highway Association ; Pan-
American Society; Founder, Pan-American Chamber of Commerce;
Member, Chamber of Commerce of the United States; and Member,
Board of Consulting Engineers, Barge Canals, New York State.

Dr. Corthell was also a member of the following military and
patriotic associations: Grand Army of the Republic; Military Order
of the Loyal Legion; Sons of the American Revolution; New England
Society ; and Society of the Army of the Potomac.

He was also a member of several academical and university
societies and clubs, including the University Club, New York City,
Phi Beta Kappa and Sigma Chi Societies, and of the Engineers Club
of Rio de Janeiro.

After a half century of continuous work devoted to the service of
his fellow-man and the advancement and up-building of the Engineer-
ing Profession, he has now passed away, leaving the Profession and the
world better and enriched by his work, which has been a shining
example of an enthusiastic, industrious, useful life.

Throughout it all, in adversity as well as in prosperity, he met his
daily problems with enthusiasm, and ever had his hand extended to
encourage and help all with whom he came in contact, particularly
the younger members of the Profession. He was always ready to assist
them, not only by advice and counsel, but by financial aid and the use
of his influence, in obtaining positions and advancements.

His memory will always flourish in the hearts of those who have been
favored by his acquaintance.

Dr. Corthell was elected a Member of the American Society of Civil
Engineers, on September 2d, 1874. He served two terms as Vice-Presi-
dent, in 1889 and 1893-94, and was elected President on January
19th, 1916.


CHARLES CONRAD SCHNEIDER, Past-President, Am. Soe. C. E.*

Died January 8th, 1916.

Charles Conrad Scluieider, the son of Julius and Emilie Schneider,
was born in Apolda, Saxony, on April 24th, 1843. He attended school
in his native city, and then served an apprenticeship in a machine
shop. After this he attended the Royal School of Technology in
Chemnitz, Saxony, from which he was graduated in 1864. He after-
ward devoted a few years to active professional practice as a Mechanical

In 1867, Mr. Schneider came to the United States and, for three
years, was employed as a Draftsman with the Rogers Locomotive
Works, at Paterson, N. J.

He was quick to perceive the great field for development which lay
in the branch of the profession which he subsequently adopted, and
his name will be prominently associated for all time with those mem-
bers of the profession who have done so much in the past 40 or 50
years to study, develop, and perfect the science and art of Structural

His first work in this line was with the Michigan Bridge and Con-
struction Company, of Detroit, Mich., with which Company he accepted
a position as Assistant Engineer in 1871. In 1873, he took charge
of the Engineer's Ofiice of the Erie Railroad Company in New York
City, under the late Octave Chanute, Past-President, Am. Soc. C. E.,
Chief Engineer. In this position, one of Mr. Schneider's duties was
to check the strain sheets and plans submitted by bridge companies.
Up to this time this had not been the general practice, the railroads
depending mainly on the bridge companies for the correctness of
the designs. He also organized a thoroughly trained inspection force.
At this time experienced inspectors could hardly be obtained, and the
work was generally accepted without inspection. Mr. Schneider selected
a number of young men from the office and shops, who showed prac-
tical ability, and gave them instructions which enabled them to inspect
the work in the shops, both as to quality and progress.

Bridge work up to this time had usually been let on a competitive
lump-sum basis. Mr. Schneider soon found that this method was
unsatisfactory, and the Railroad Company's officials decided to make
their own plans; and it was Mr. Schneider's duty to prepare them.
The bridge requirements for 1874 were designed in this way, and
the work was let on a pound-price basis, and this, in all probability,

* Memoir prepared by the following Committee : Paul L. Wolfel, Richard Khuen, Jr.,
and O. E. Hovey, Members, Am. Soc. C. E.


was the first instance where bridge work was let by the pound, a
procedure which Mr. Schneider always favored.

In 1876 and the early part of 1877, he was engaged by the Board
of Engineers (sometimes called the Steinway Commission), appointed
by the Long Island Bridge Company, to prepare and pass on plans
for a railroad and highway bridge across the East River, to connect
Long Island with New York City. It was the intention to locate this
bridge between 76th and 77th Streets, this site having been selected
as the narrowest point in the East River. The plan required a 734-ft.
span across the west channel and a 618-ft. span across the east channel.
The project, however, was not carried out at this time, on account of
the financial condition of the Company.

From May, 1877, to July, 1878, Mr. Schneider was associated with
the Delaware Bridge Company, of New York, as a Designer. Charles

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