The History Of The Crane

Cranes are instrumental to the world of construction. Without them, the homes we live in, the offices we work in, the restaurants we eat in just wouldn’t be the same. So, what is the history of the humble crane?

Another item to add to Ancient Greece’s list of inventions

Ancient Greece is well known for its contribution to modern day society. They didn’t stop at inventing the Olympics, geometry and the alarm clock. Indeed, they were the first to invent the crane. While most countries were using skilled labour when lifting equipment during construction, the Ancient Greeks were miles ahead. As early as 515 BC distinctive cuttings for lifting tongs and lewis irons were discovered on stone blocks of Greek temples. These were the first blueprints for our modern cranes.

The evolution of cranes

While we pay homage to the Greeks for inventing the crane, we have certainly evolved from the types of cranes used 2500 years and the types of cranes we use today.

The Romans took the Ancient Greeks’ invention and developed it further; which in turn was improved upon by the French in the middle ages, and again developed further by the Italians in the early modern ages. During this time the esteemed renaissance architect Domenico Fontana made use of the crane to relocate the 361 tonnes Vatican obelisk in Rome.

Cranes in construction

Like the Ancient Greeks the modern day world has recognised the need to develop and expand their societies. A common way in which they are doing this is through construction; an industry which has expanded in this technological age. Whether it be the development of a new office building in the heart of London or a loft conversion to your home, there is always a construction going on, and there is always a crane for that construction.

Not all cranes are the large ones you see towering over skyscrapers

Unless you work in construction or are a crane hire company it is unlikely that you will know a lot about cranes. Cranes can come in all different shapes and sizes but the idea is the same -t hey are used for heavy lifting. They can range from rubber tracked, truck, city glass to all terrain cranes. Some cranes are more suitable for long term utility projects; others are specifically used in cities and some are even mobile.

Cranes are more entertaining than you may think

Cranes are not just used for lifting equipment beyond our sheer muscle power and in fact have been the unseen star of the show in films. How do you think shots hundreds of feet above the ground are filmed? The crawler crane manoeuvres in tight access areas and lifts the cameraman above the ground. And there we have it – the crawler crane’s claim to fame.