Lewis A. Pick

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Lewis Andrew Pick
Lewis A Pick.jpg
Lieutenant General Lewis A. Pick
Born (1890-11-18)November 18, 1890
Brookneal, Virginia
Died December 2, 1956(1956-12-02) (aged 66)
Washington, D.C.
Allegiance  United States of America
Service/branch United States Army seal United States Army
Years of service 1917–1953
Rank US-O9 insignia.svg Lieutenant General
Commands held Chief of Engineers (1949-1953)
Battles/wars World War I
World War II
Cold War
Awards Distinguished Service Medal (2)

Lewis Andrew Pick (November 18, 1890 – December 2, 1956) was born in Brookneal, Virginia, and graduated from Virginia Polytechnic Institute in 1914. He received his Regular Army commission in the United States Army Corps of Engineers on July 1, 1917.

Military career[edit]

During World War I he served with the 23rd Engineers in the French Third Republic. He served in the Philippines from 1921 until 1923 and helped organize an engineer regiment composed of Filipino soldiers. He was the Corps of Engineers' District Engineer in New Orleans during the Great Mississippi Flood of 1927, and he helped coordinate federal relief efforts. Pick was named Missouri River Division Engineer in 1942, and with William Glenn Sloan of the Bureau of Reclamation he co-wrote the Pick-Sloan Plan for controlling the water resources of the Missouri River Basin.

Colonel Pick was assigned to the China Burma India Theater of World War II in October 1943, replacing Brigadier General John C. Arrowsmith as Chief Road Engineer. He oversaw construction of the Ledo Road in British Raj India and Burma. His driving force enabled the difficult task to be completed in two and a half years. His men nicknamed the road "Pick's Pike".

After his return to the United States in 1945, he served again as Missouri River Division Engineer. On March 1, 1949, President of the United States Harry S. Truman appointed him Chief of Engineers. Pick was awarded the Distinguished Service Medal with Oak Leaf Cluster. Pick City, North Dakota located by the Garrison Dam on the Missouri River was founded in 1946 and named for him.[1] Pickstown, South Dakota located by the Fort Randall Dam was also named for him. He died in Washington, D.C. and was buried in Auburn, AL.

Personal life[edit]

Pick Graduated from Virginia Polytechnic Institute in 1914. He was initiated into Theta Chi Fraternity in 1924 at Auburn University, where he was a professor of military science and tactics. Pick married Alice Cary, one of the founding members of the Sigma Lambda Chapter of Kappa Delta Sorority at Auburn.

In 1948, Pick was elevated to National Honor Member by Chi Epsilon national civil engineering honor society.

The Lewis Andrew Pick Birthplace is a contributing property in the Brookneal Historic District.[2]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Pick City named for Lewis A. Pick http://www.epodunk.com/cgi-bin/genInfo.php?locIndex=52896
  2. ^ W. Scott Breckinridge Smith (September 2010). "National Register of Historic Places Inventory/Nomination: Brookneal Historic District" (PDF). 
Military offices
Preceded by
Raymond A. Wheeler
Chief of Engineers
Succeeded by
Samuel D. Sturgis, Jr.