Skip to main content

Pratt Institute Power Plant

Location: Brooklyn, NY, USA
Date: 1887
Creator(s): Pratt, Charles

Steam and the inexpensive electricity it could produce brought about dramatic technical growth in the United States. Developed during the last century, reliable and efficient steam engines were the forerunners of today's massive generating facilities. A rare survivor of the period, the Pratt facility is the oldest generating plant of its kind in the Northeast and embodies the typical features of engines in a row, open-front marble switchboard, and an observation balcony at street level. An early investment in steam generating equipment, the plant maintains three operable reciprocating steam generators built in 1900 and a Curtis turbine (ca. 1909) by General Electric.

The plant has been continuously generating electricity for the facilities of Pratt Institute since 1887, almost as efficiently now as it did when first installed.

Tags: Era: 1880-1889
Innovation designated by:
Pratt Institute Power Plant
Public Domain (National Park Service)
Pratt Institute Power Plant
Brooklyn, NY, USA

40.691111, -73.963889

We hope you enjoyed this essay.

Please support America's only magazine of the history of engineering and innovation, and the volunteers that sustain it with a donation to Invention & Technology.


Stay informed - subscribe to our newsletter.
The subscriber's email address.