Originally Posted by Moonstruck
I have to 'fess up to Peggy. I have recently been doing a study on the Monitor and Virginia.
Ericsson was so far ahead of his time! Brunel, a Brit with the improbable first and middle names of Isambard Kingdom was another. A civil engineer/bridge builder and designer who became taken with the idea of ship building, he actually invented the ship's bridge (among other things), which was actually a bridge across the deck of of a ship. When the original need for it passed into history, the bridge had proven its additional worth as a raised command center, so the concept--and the name for it--still endures. You can read about Brunel and the three ships he designed and built here:
A more detailed biography of his life as a railroad designer is here:
Isambard Kingdom Brunel / - Design/Designer Information
And google will turn up a lot more him and his ships.