Lansing Community College has announced that it will be holding its Iron & Steel Preservation Conference again this year, March 5-6. Last year’s conference, funded in part through the PTT Grants Program, was a great hit with participants and led to the production of a series of informational materials and high quality training videos. NCPTT’s own Jason Church attended last year’s conference and reports that “This was one of the most professionally organized and smooth flowing conferences I’ve ever attended. I highly recommend this to anyone working with historic iron or steel structures.”

Participant practices heat straightening of a damaged historic I-beam.

Last year’s conference was attended by a range of professions–including architects, conservators, historians, and trades people. The conference is a hands-on experience that give the people responsible for the restoration of historic bridges and other metal structures the opportunity to handle a rivet gun or work with wrought iron and actually experience historical construction techniques first-hand.

Presentations at last year’s conference included:

  • “Wrought Iron in 19th Century Engineering” Emory L. Kemp, Professor Emeritus of History and Civil Engineering (West Virginia University) international expert in the history of technology and the restoration of structures
  • “D. B. Steinman and His Suspension Bridges” Dr. Frank J. Hatfield, Professor Emeritus of Civil Engineering (Michigan State University)
  • “Managing Risk in Historic Bridge Restoration, A Case Study” Mark Latsch, PE; Stephen Wilder, PE; Tanya Moore, LLA, (Spicer Group, Inc., Saginaw, Michigan)
  • “Critical Highway Infrastructure Monitoring Project” Steven Cook, P.E., Operations Engineer (Michigan Department of Transportation)
  • “Bowstring Truss Design, Fabrication, and Field Assembly” David A. Simmons, editor of Timeline, and President of the Ohio Historic Bridge Association (Columbus, Ohio)
  • “Maintenance of Historic Metals” Steven Shaup, P.E., “Maintenance of Historic Metals” (TranSystems)
  • Film: “Top of the World” Presented by Director/Writer Russell Pflueger and Producer/Actor Jeff Pucillo
Additional details and registration for the conference will be available at
Hear a podcast by Lansing Community College’s Vern Mesler on the preservation of iron and steel.

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One Response to Conference: Iron & Steel Preservation, March 5-6, 2012

  1. Karen Van Etten says:

    I have been involved with saving Newfield New York’s King Bowstring Bridge for a decade and am now writing a book about Zenas King and preservation of iron bridges. The word needs to get out that if historically preserving King Iron Bridges can be done, with the knowledge of College students, then we have a shot at not losing anymore of these monuments to our past, equal to the cannons of Gettysburg or other national icons.

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