Biography of George Goethals

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George Goethals

Born on June 29, 1858, in Brooklyn, New York, to the parents of two Dutch immigrants, George Washington Goethals would soon be one of the most eminent men in industrial history. He was an army officer that fought in Europe in World War One. George Goethals would be presented a great feat, the building of the Panama Canal. George Goethals is the engineer who supervised the building of the Panama Canal. An American engineer, and an army officer in World War One, George Goethals is one of the most undervalued men in American history.

George Goethals moved to New York City at the age of eleven. Goethals studied for three years to become a physician at the College of New York City. After three years of studying at the College of New York City he attended US Military Academy at West Point. Goethals graduated second in his class in 1880. He then moved on to become an engineer. Goethals worked on projects dealing with river and harbor improvements. He gained valuable experience in dealing with these canals and harbors. He eventually started teaching engineering at West Point College and served as an assistant army chief of engineers. During the Spanish-American War he was promoted to chief engineer of the First Army Corps and eventually was assigned to the general staff of the United States. His work in the general staff of the United States sent him to live in Washington D.C. He was introduced to many political leaders and government officials including President Theodore Roosevelt. (Goethals, George Washington)

In 1904 the Panama Canal was being built under the supervision of John Findley Wallace, however, Wallace resigned after only a year because of frustration on the isthmus. Wallace was then replaced with Jo...

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... Canal is one of the greatest industrial accomplishments in history.

Works Cited

"Biographies." George Washington Goethals Biography. http://www.essaytask.com/biographies/George-Washington-Goethals-29556.html (accessed May 28, 2014).

"Goethals, George Washington." Goethals, George Washington. http://www.asce.org/pplcontent.aspx? Id=2147487331 (accessed May 28, 2014).

"Panama Canal Authority." George Washington Goethals. http://www.pancanal.com/eng/history/biographies/goethals.html (accessed May 28, 2014).

"The Chief Engineers of the Panama Canal." PBS. http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/americanexperience/features/general-article/panama-engineers/ (accessed May 28, 2014).

Zimmerman, Phyllis A. The neck of the bottle George W. Goethals and the reorganization of the U.S. Army supply system, 1917-1918. College Station: Texas A & M University Press, 1992.

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