Dodge, Grenville

Dodge, Grenville (Mellen)

(1831–1916) engineer, soldier; born in Danvers, Mass. A railroad surveyor in the West, and a merchant in Iowa (after 1854), he volunteered in the Civil War, rising to command a Union army division. Although he saw considerable action and was wounded twice in battle, his greatest contribution to the Union's victory came from his ability to build or rebuild damaged railroads and bridges. After the war he became chief engineer of the Union Pacific Railroad (1866–70)—he fit in one term in the U.S. House of Representatives (Rep., Iowa; 1867–69)—and he oversaw the construction of the Union Pacific transcontinental rail line, completed in 1869. After 1871 he served as chief engineer with other railroads in the Southwest; after the Spanish-American War he helped build railroads in Cuba. He is credited with having built over 10,000 miles of railroad and surveying many more miles. He headed the so-called Dodge Commission (1898–1900) that investigated the U.S. Army's conduct during the Spanish-American War and led to organizational reforms.
The Cambridge Dictionary of American Biography, by John S. Bowman. Copyright © Cambridge University Press 1995. Reproduced with permission.
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