Having been associated with the asphalt industry for more than 50 years, James F. Gallagher deserved the title of “Mr. Asphalt” given to him by many of his contracting and engineering peers. He started his work with asphalt in 1912 and owned and operated his own contracting company from 1930 until his retirement in the early 1960’s.
Mr. Gallagher was instrumental in the development of asphalt paving equipment, holding a patent on the heated screed. He also originated the idea of the hydraulic lifting system for the screed portion of one type of asphalt paver and invented the idea for the first leveling arm attachment for this machine.
His work with different types of asphalt mixes contributed greatly to the industry. He was issued a patent for a special asphalt and cork pavement for use in playgrounds, and was instrumental in developing asphalt mixtures in which commercially produced stone-sand was used in the state of Illinois.
Mr. Gallagher was active in many industry organizations and was a long-time member of the Association of Asphalt Paving Technologists.