June 29th, 2024
George Goethals was an American engineer and army officer. Goethals was born in Brooklyn, New York to Belgian immigrants. He was the State Engineer of New Jersey and the Acting Quartermaster General of the United States Army. He also was chief engineer of the Panama Canal, and the first civil governor of the Canal Zone. Retired for a second time in 1919, Goethals returned to New York as a consulting engineer. He was one of the Holland Tunnel project's early supporters, and he consulted on the development of the inner harbor of New Orleans and the Columbia Basin irrigation project.
A pair of cable-stayed bridges stand in his honor today, connecting Staten Island, NY to Elizabeth, NJ over the Arthur Kill. The newer bridges replaced an 85-year-old bridge that previously spanned the Kill.