Civil Engineering ETDs

Publication Date

Fall 11-15-2017


Preserving historical concrete structures recognizes the work and skills of past generations and allows the communities surrounding these pieces of history the opportunity to enjoy the character and purpose of their construction. Restoration of concrete picnic tables, constructed in the 1930s by the Civilian Conservation Corps, required researching materials and methods of construction during the original construction period. Eight decades of environmental and weather cycles did not decay the historic structures. Acts of vandalism destroyed the purpose of the tables and benches. Restoration of the historic picnic tables required extensive literature review for the materials and methods used during the period. Changes in the manufacturing of cement products from 1933 to today added to the challenge. To design a new concrete that would maintain the performance of original picnic tables required new materials and modern technology. Scanning electron microscopes and petrographic analysis provided the information as to the materials used in the historic concrete mix design. Discoveries by the technology provided the evidence the research questions asked. The results were determined through review of historic literature, investigating historic mix designs, use of modern technology, and laboratory experiments.


Concrete, preservation, historic, alkaline-silica-reaction, chromium

Document Type




Degree Name

Civil Engineering

Level of Degree


Department Name

Civil Engineering

First Committee Member (Chair)

Dr. Susan M. Bogus

Second Committee Member

Dr. Mahmoud Reda Taha

Third Committee Member

Dr. Vanessa Valentin