Hardy Cross

American Engineer
Author: Leonard K. Eaton
Appendix by Emory L. Kemp
The first biography of one of America's most brilliant civil engineers
Cloth – $42
Publication Date
Cloth: 11/20/2006
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About the Book

In this close study of a key figure in the history of technology, Leonard K. Eaton examines Hardy Cross's training, his work, his teaching, and his ideas, demonstrating how his achievements represent a pivotal moment in the history of structural engineering. During Cross's tenure at the University of Illinois (1921-37), he developed the "moment distribution method," allowing mathematicians to calculate statistically indeterminate frames of reinforced concrete for the first time. Later known as the Cross method, this achievement made possible the calculations that allowed for safe and efficient designs from reinforced concrete--a new material at the time--and the subsequent architectural revolution.

About the Author

Leonard K. Eaton is Emil Lorch Professor of Architecture, emeritus, at the University of Michigan. He is the author of Landscape Artist in America: The Life and Work of Jens Jensen and other books.

Emory L. Kemp is professor emeritus and director of the Institute for the History of Technology and Industrial Archaeology at West Virginia University.


"Eaton's book . . . provides an account of one of the first internationally important, American-educated engineering theoreticians. There are illuminating anecdotes demonstrating Cross's pedagogical method and, by implication, his unusual thinking."--Technology and Culture


"Hardy Cross: American Engineer is a refreshing and long-overdue work on an internationally revered civil engineering genius. A very nice read."--Mir M. Ali, author of Art of the Skyscraper