Leffert L. Buck

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Leffert L. Buck
Leffert L. Buck at the age of 50
Leffert Lefferts Buck

(1837-02-05)February 5, 1837
DiedJuly 17, 1909(1909-07-17) (aged 72)
EducationSt. Lawrence University
Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute
Engineering career
ProjectsWilliamsburg Bridge

Leffert Lefferts Buck (February 5, 1837 – July 7, 1909)[2] was an American civil engineer and a pioneer in the use of steel arch bridge structures.[1]


Leffert graduated from St. Lawrence University in 1863.[3] After his graduation from St. Lawrence, Buck enlisted and fought for the Union Army in the American Civil War under General Slocum, participating in the battles at Antietam, Chancellorsville, Gettysburg, Lookout Mountain, Missionary Ridge, Peachtree Creek, Resaca and Ringgold Gap.[4]

Following the completion of the Civil War, Buck earned his civil engineering degree from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Troy, New York, in 1868.[3] He was associated with Richard Buck, also a prominent bridge engineer.[5]

Some of his projects include:[6]

Williamsburg Bridge in 3D, in about 1905
Pont De Rennes

Buck served as president of the American Society of Civil Engineers.[3]

Buck died on July 7, 1909, in Hastings, New York.[3] His widow, Mira Gould Buck, died in Eastview, New York, in 1946 at the age of 84.[9]


A dormitory in the Quadrangle complex at Rensselaer is named after him.[10]


  1. ^ a b The National Cyclopaedia of American Biography. Vol. 10. New York: James T. White & Company. 1900. pp. 115–116.
  2. ^ a b "Great Bridge Builder Dead". The New York Sun. July 18, 1909. p. 2. Retrieved July 17, 2022 – via Chronicling America.
  3. ^ a b c d e "Leffert L. Buck, Bridgemaker, Dead; Well-Known Civil Engineer a Victim of Apoplexy at the Breakfast Table. Built Niagara Bridges; Also the Williamsburg Bridge Over the East River and Others Abroad -- Was Wounded in the War". The New York Times. Hastings, New York. July 18, 1909. Retrieved July 17, 2022 – via Newspapers.com.
  4. ^ a b "Mr. Buck the Engineer; Will Look After the New East River Bridge". The New York Times. August 3, 1895. p. 9. Retrieved July 17, 2022 – via Newspapers.com.
  5. ^ "Richard Buck Dies; Noted for Bridges; Retired Engineer Helped Design the Williamsburg, Queensboro and Manhattan Spans". The New York Times. August 5, 1951. Retrieved November 28, 2017.
  6. ^ "Lindenthal Bridge Plans Discarded; Commissioner Best Deems Them to be Impracticable. Architect Hornbostel to Get $60,000 for Campanile Scheme, but Will Be Deprived of Opportunity to Get $100,000 for Carrying Them Out". The New York Times. February 14, 1904. p. 8. Retrieved July 17, 2022 – via Newspapers.com.
  7. ^ "Engineer Buck's Salary Cut.; Made Consulting Engineer of Williamsburg Bridge". The New York Times. May 1, 1902. p. 2. Retrieved July 17, 2022 – via Newspapers.com.
  8. ^ Teichman, Alan (November 5, 1999). "Leffert L. Buck Biography". www.teichman-home.org. Archived from the original on July 28, 2011. Retrieved July 26, 2010.
  9. ^ "Mrs. Leffert Buck". The New York Times. January 8, 1946. Retrieved November 28, 2017.
  10. ^ "Quadrangle Complex". Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. Retrieved September 12, 2009.

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