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Henry R. Buck
(1876-1934)

Henry Robinson Buck was born on September 14, 1876 in Wethersfield, Connecticut and graduated from Yale University with a degree in civil engineering in 1896. He went to work for the City of Hartford, becoming assistant city engineer in 1902. He resigned from the city in June 1905 to enter private practice. By 1909, he was already a senior partner in the firm Buck & Sheldon, which ultimately dissolved in 1928. In 1930, Buck and his son Henry Wolcott Buck formed Henry Robinson Buck, Inc., an engineering firm that primarily engaged in sanitary engineering, surveying and consulting. Buck's wide-ranging career earned him the Hartford Courant's epithet "one of the most widely known engineers in the state" upon his death. He worked as a sanitation engineer, designing sewer systems and industrial plants, and served on the State Factory Wastes Commission (a precursor to the State Water Commission). While in private practice, he performed a great deal of work for the State of Connecticut. For example, he re-surveyed the state's boundary lines and worked on construction of the State Armory. Buck also worked for years for the New York, New Haven, and Hartford Railroad before the railroad formed its own engineering department in New Haven.

In addition to his more urban engineering projects, Buck pursued an interest in forests and parks. In that realm, he worked for the Civilian Conservation Corp (CCC), a Franklin D. Roosevelt work project that employed young men during the Depression in forestry and conservation projects. State Forester Austin F. Hawes (for whom the American Legion State Forest campground is named) appointed Buck to direct the building of Connecticut's CCC camps on April 9, 1933. During his tenure with the CCC, Buck also designed and constructed the trail in American Legion State Forest that now bears his name. He also donated money to the Peoples Forest Fund.

Henry R. Buck married Mary Ladoyett Wolcott on December 3, 1901. They had three children: Henry Wolcott Buck, who settled in Wethersfield, Robinson D. Buck, who remained in Hartford, and Elisabeth R. Buck Dort, who settled in Washington D.C. Henry Robinson Buck was killed in a head-on collision on the east side of Avon Mountain, on Route 44, August 11, 1934 as he traveled toward his Hartford home from business in western Connecticut. The Henry R. Buck Trail in the American Legion State Forest was dedicated in his honor on May 20, 1935.
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[Citation format for this entry:
WILSON, Wendell E. (2017)
Mineralogical Record
Biographical Archive, at www.mineralogicalrecord.com.]
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