Clemson University

Emeritus College Online Seminar with Dr. Cecil Huey

November 4 (Wednesday) 10:00am – 11:30am, Online Seminar: The Hacienda La Esperanza Steam Engine and Sugar Mill with Dr. Cecil Huey, Professor Emeritus of Mechanical Engineering: A century and a half ago, long before our modern sensibilities emerged, we relied on machines that would be downright frightening today.  This program recounts the instructor's decade-long participation in returning a large, long-abandoned, inherently dangerous, 19th century steam powered sugar mill to safe operation.  It was not a simple matter.   The Hacienda La Esperanza steam engine and sugar mill located near Manati, Puerto Rico, was built at the West Point Foundry in Cold Springs, NY, in 1861.  It operated at its present site for some 25 years and then lay abandoned until acquired by the Conservation Trust of Puerto Rico nearly a century later.  Technically, the engine is a six-column, drop valve, side crank steam engine having a 16-inch bore, 40-inch stroke, and a flywheel 18 feet in diameter.  It is the only American six-column beam engine known to survive and is the only operable drop valve engine known.  Successful steam operation was achieved in March 2015, and, now, after surviving a century of neglect and Hurricane Maria, it is regularly, and safely, demonstrated for visitors.  The entire Hacienda is on the National Register of Historic places, and the engine and sugar mill are recognized as a National Historic Mechanical Engineering Landmark by the American Society of Mechanical Engineers.

Please contact Nicci Hanewald at with any questions or if you would like information about joining the presentation. 

Click HERE more for information on joining and participating in a ZOOM Meeting.

Wednesday, November 4 at 10:00am to 11:30am

Virtual Event
Event Type



Emeritus College, College of Engineering, Computing and Applied Sciences, Industrial Engineering, Mechanical Engineering

Target Audience

Students, Faculty, Staff, Undergraduate, Graduate, Postdocs



No Cost

Contact Name:

Nicci Hanewald

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Contact Nicci Hanewald at for more information about joining the presentation.


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