Highway under the Hudson
A History of the Holland Tunnel
نویسندهRobert W. Jackson
کتاب های مرتبط
- نقد و بررسی
- دیدگاه کاربران
نقد و بررسی
October 10, 2011
Urban planner and National Park Service historian Jackson has documented historic bridges and highways in Texas, Iowa, and Pennsylvania. Now he offers exhaustive research on the creation of the Holland Tunnel, linking New York and New Jersey, the world’s longest underwater tunnel when it opened in 1927. The rise of automobile travel was a major factor. Earlier, railroad-owned ferries transported “almost all the city’s food and fuel.” It was the first tunnel with a ventilation system to combat motor-vehicular fumes and thus became a model for all later vehicular tunnels. Jackson covers events that necessitated a tunnel, including plans, reports, political conflicts, contracts, and seven years of construction. Profiles are presented of the young chief engineer, Clifford Holland, and other key figures. An outstanding chapter on the mostly immigrant sandhogs details the hazardous working conditions that led to injuries and deaths. Holland himself had a “complete mental breakdown” and died of heart failure two days before the tunnel was complete. Jackson has excavated a vast amount of information, bringing this authoritative history of a ground-breaking tunnel to life. 56 illus.
December 1, 2011
Jackson (former historian, Historic American Engineering Record) provides the first in-depth history of the creation of this famous tunnel built in the 1920s, a monumental undertaking designed to facilitate moving people and goods under the Hudson River and still an essential passage between Manhattan and the rest of the country. His vivid account features a colorful cast of characters--from politicians to hundreds of engineers, businesspeople, local citizens, and especially the "sandhogs" who had the dangerous job of actually digging the tunnel. Jackson considers the real hero the tunnel's first chief engineer, Clifford Holland, who worked tirelessly for its completion against nearly insurmountable odds but died at age 41 before it opened. Fittingly, the tunnel was then named after him. Readers learn here of the extensive research that went into creating the tunnel's ventilation system, which successfully eliminated lethal exhaust gases, enabling the construction of future tunnels. VERDICT An important work chronicling a largely unsung American engineering feat. While the narrative occasionally gets lost in the factual "weeds," it remains a compelling story and serves as a dramatic reminder that government can accomplish great things that the private sector cannot. For all transportation and American urban history collections.--Richard Drezen, Brooklyn, NY
Copyright 2011 Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.