Historical Rosters Database
Marsden MansonRoster ID 866
This is a summary. Contact the Archives for additional biographical information.
|Affiliation:||Class of 1870|
|Biography & Genealogy:||Marsden Manson, Class of 1870: Genealogy & Marriages: Born- Feb. 14, 1850 at "Leewood" Campbell County, Virginia; Father- R.E. Manson of Bedford Co. Va.; Mother- Sophia Anne Smith of Norfolk, VA (Sophia was the sister of VMI's first Superintendent, Francis H. Smith); paternal grandfather- Nathaniel J. Manson; paternal grandmother- Sally Alexander; maternal grandmother- Ann Marsden; maternal grandfather- James Smith, of Norfolk, VA. His brother, Nathaniel, was a member of the VMI Class of 1871. Married- 1st- Samuella L. Chase; no issue. Married 2nd, on Jan. 6, 1916- Julia Diana Elizabeth Wright, daughter of G. Aleander Wright of "Knollwood", St. Helena, CA; they had two children - 1- Julia Alexandria Wright b. Dec. 31, 1917; 2- Marsden Wright, b. July 16, 1919. VMI Record: Entered VMI on Sept. 7, 1866; Graduated July 4, 1870, standing 16 in a class of 52. Careers: Primarily engineer and inventor; also served as Assistant Professor of Physics, French, and Tactics at VMI (1876-1877); held various senior positions in engineering for the city of San Franciso beginning in the 1880's and served as City Engineer from 1908-1912; helped rebuild the city after the great earthquake & fire; proposed the building of the Hetch Hetchy Valley Dam to help solve San Francisco's water supply problem; this controversial project was authorized by Congress in 1913 despite the opposition of many early environmentalists, led by John Muir and the Sierra Club. Death: Feb. 21, 1931 in San Francisco, after a long illness. Survived by his widow and 2 children, who were living at 2905 Regent St., Berkeley; the funeral was held at Christ Church, Alameda.|