Born in Hollidaysburg, PA, to James D. and Ruth (Moore) Rea, Samuel Rea represents that group of engineers who were associated with the Pennsylvania Railroad and with railway development in general. By age 15 he was already employed in the Pennsylvania Railroad's engineering department, and he continued his association with railway concerns for the rest of his career, retiring from the presidency of the Pennsylvania Railroad in 1925.
In recognition of his achievement, the University of Pennsylvania awarded Rea an honorary Sc.D. in 1910; this was followed in 1916 by an honorary Sc.D. from Princeton University and, also in 1916, an LL.D., from Lafayette College. In 1926 he was awarded the prestigious Franklin Medal.
Rea joined the American Society of Civil Engineers in 1884. He also served on a number of local boards of trustees, including those for Bryn Mawr Hospital, Bryn Mawr Presbyterian Church, the Pennsylvania Museum.
Sandra L. Tatman.
Clubs and Membership Organizations
- American Society of Civil Engineers
- University of Pennsylvania
- Princeton University
- Lafayette College (Easton
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