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     J. Frederick Jackson, whose high professional attainments have gained him prominence and power in his chosen field of labor, has been identified with many important civil engineering projects of this state. He was born July 4, 1871, in the city where he yet makes his home, and is a son of George Jackson, a native of Ireland, who came to the United States in the early '40s. He was connected with the operating department of the New York, New Haven & Hartford Railroad for over forty years and is now living retired, enjoying the fruits of a well spent life. He married Elizabeth Gallagher, who has passed away. In their family were six children, of whom J. Frederick is the youngest.
     He attended the public and high schools of New Haven and then entered the Sheffield Scientific School, from which he graduated in 1895 with the Ph. B. degree. In 1890 he made application to the New York, New Haven & Hartford Railroad Company and secured the position of rodman and chainman in connection with the building of a four-track system of the main line between South Norwalk and Bridgeport and the rebuilding of a number of bridges in connection therewith. He was on the double tracking and cut-off work of the Shore Line division between Leete Island and New Haven, including the tunneling of the Fair Haven heights. In that work he continued until 1895, when, having pursued a professional course, he became structural draftsman for the Union Bridge Company on the work connected with the building of the elevated railroads in New York city. From 1896 until 1909 he was assistant engineer of the city of New Haven, during which period he was connected with all the important sewer, bridge and pavement work, incident with the transition of New Haven from a thriving New England town to a full grown city. From 1909 until 1913 he was engaged on the construction of the Shore Line Electric Railway from Saybrook to New Haven; and supervision of many municipal improvements for the towns of Hamden, West Haven and East Haven as well as engineering development propositions for private individuals. He was retained by the city of Bridgeport as expert in the condemnation proceedings of land for Seaside Park. In private practice his work has included the investigation and report on the pollution of its watershed of one hundred and sixty-five square miles for the city of Willimantic and designs for several important buildings in New Haven. He was engineer for the Savin Rock Park commission on the design for the reclamation of two and one-half miles of shore at an estimated cost of one million dollars; was engineer member of the Connecticut state board of health in charge of the investigation of stream pollution and made the report to the general assembly covering conditions on every stream of appreciable size in the state of Connecticut. He has made examinations of and reports upon all proposed systems of water supply and sewerage in the state. In June, 1917, he was appointed a member of the public health council of the new state department of health.
     In 1897 Mr. Jackson was married in New Haven to Miss Agnes L. Spencer, a native of this city and a daughter of John and Mary Spencer. They are members of the Roman Catholic church and Mr. Jackson belongs to the Graduates Club. In politics he is a democrat and is at present director of the bureau of sanitary engineering of the state department of health, a position for which his comprehensive knowledge of engineering in its broadest phase well qualifies him. He has membership with the Ancient Order of United Workmen and with many professional societies, including the American Society of Civil Engineers, the Connecticut Society of Civil Engineers, of which he is the secretary and treasurer, the New England Water Works Association and the American Public Health Association. His life work has indeed been of a most important character. He has been associated with many of the most prominent engineering projects put forth in this state— projects which have to do much with material development and in their farreaching effect have most important influence over many conditions, especially those which affect public travel, through the building of railroads and streets, and public health through supervision of engineering work having to do with sewerage and water systems. Contemporaries and colleagues in the profession accord him rank as one of the eminent civil engineers of Connecticut.

Modern History of New Haven
Eastern New Haven County


Volume II

New York – Chicago
The S. J. Clarke Publishing Company 

pgs 503 - 504

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Elaine Kidd O'Leary & 
Anne Taylor-Czaplewski
May 2002