Civil Engineering History at Umaine


The University of Maine was established as the Maine College of Agriculture and the Mechanic Arts under the provisions of the Morrill Act, approved by President Abraham Lincoln in 18lincoln62. In 1897 the original name changed to the University of Maine. The institution opened Sept. 21, 1868 with 13 students admitted that fall.

By 1871, curricula had been organized in Agriculture, Civil Engineering, Mechanical Engineering, and electives. From these courses of study, others gradually developed such as the Colleges of Life Sciences and Agriculture (later to include the School of Forest Resources and the School of Human Development), Engineering and Science, and Arts and Sciences.

1872 graduates

The first four Civil Engineering graduates receiving their degree in 1872 were Benajamin F. Gould, George E. Hammond, Heddle Hillard, and Eber D. Thomas. 

Margaret L. Chase

The first woman to receive a civil Engineering degree was Margaret L. Chase in 1943, 71 years later. She was a native of Bangor, Maine.

Francis T. Crowe, the chief engineer of the Hoover dam in Nevada, graduated from UMaine in Civil Engineering in 1905. Since 2000, The Francis Crowe Society to honor all engineering graduates has been established at UMaine. It also honors professionals with significant connection to the College of Engineering and the University of Maine.

Click for a  broader view of UMaine’s engineering history .