William J. Wilgus papers

Collection Data

William John Wilgus (1865-1949) was a civil engineer who worked for the New York Central and Hudson River Railroad. By 1899 he was the chief engineer for construction and maintenance of way and in 1903 became vice-president in charge of construction. During those years he supervised the planning and construction of Buffalo Union Station, the Weehawken (N.J.) Terminal and the modern Grand Central Station. In 1907 Wilgus opened his own consulting practice and advised railroad companies on construction and improvement projects for states and municipalities including several concerned with the improvement of passenger and freight transportation in the New York Metropolitan area. During World War I he directed transportation for the Allied Expeditionary Forces in France. After his retirement from private practice in 1930, he devoted much of his time to writing and research on military and civilian transportation issues while working in the private sector. Collection consists of records that document Wilgus' professional activities as a civil engineer. New York Central and Hudson River Railroad papers, 1895-1931, include correspondence; research notes, articles and pictures, engineering reports, minutes, legal papers, photographs and other materials relating to the new Grand Central Station and electrification of the suburban lines leading into it, and the rehabilitation and expansion of the railroad's other lines. American Expeditionary Forces records, 1915-1933, contain correspondence, writings and translations by Wilgus, writings by others, and source materials concerning military transportation during World War I. Private consulting practice records, 1908-1930, of his consulting firm in New York City consist of materials about New York transportation and major railroad projects and of general client files. Public service activities series, 1933-1945, contains papers relating to various projects on which he worked. American Society of Civil Engineers records, 1914-1930, include Wilgus' papers as member and president of the New York chapter in 1920-1921, and records of the United Engineering Society. His writings, research notes and related correspondence, 1913-1947, contain essays, notes, correspondence, and printed materials on issues of military reorganization, transportation and war preparedness. Also, artifacts, such as medals, awards and certificates, and photographs and charts.
Wilgus, William J. (William John), 1865-1949 (Creator)
Dates / Origin
Date Created: 1895 - 1947
Library locations
Manuscripts and Archives Division
Shelf locator: MssCol 3325
Civil engineering
Transportation -- New York (State)
Railroads -- United States
Subways -- New York (State) -- New York
World War, 1914-1918 -- Transportation
Railroad engineering
Physical Description
Extent: 115 linear feet (112 boxes)
Type of Resource
Still image
NYPL catalog ID (B-number): b11652254
MSS Unit ID: 3325
Universal Unique Identifier (UUID): 0e09cc50-c6d4-012f-cc51-58d385a7bc34
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