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Series One: The Boulton & Watt Archive and the Matthew Boulton Papers from Birmingham Central Library

Part 5: Engineering Drawings - Crank, Canal, Dock & Harbour, Mint, Blowing, Pumping and other engines, c.1775-1800

Whilst Part 3 covered drawings of the Sun and Planet Type, Part 5 addresses the wide range of other engines of different types conceived, planned and in the most part, erected during the period of Boulton’s partnership with Watt, 1775-1800.
It features over 3300 drawings covering:

  • Crank engines (These were designed for Cotton Mills, Collieries,
    Iron Foundries and Iron Works, Silk Mills, Lead Mills, Ropemakers, Dyers, Breweries, Corn and Oil Mills, Portsmouth Dockyard and a Distillery in Holland. Of particular note are the drawings for the Colliery Winding Engine at Saltcoates, engines for Werneth Colliery, Cockshead Colliery and Tredegar Iron Works).
  • Canal engines (There are drawings and other material relating to the Birmingham, Thames & Severn, Dublin, Lancaster, Gloucester & Berkly, Crinan, Warwick & Birmingham, Kennet & Avon, and Oxford Canals).
  • Dock and Harbour engines (There are drawings for the West India Dock Company, the London Dock Company and Leith Harbour).
  • Waterworks (in London, Hull and Paris).
  • Mint engines (drawings for the Soho Mint).
  • Vacuuum and Blowing engines (Drawings of engines for
    Clyde Iron Works, Holmes Iron Works, Blaenavon Iron Works,
    Donnington Furnace, Shelve Field Gravel Pits, 10 separate engines for
    the ironmaster, John Wilkinson, including one at Bradley, two at Ketley, one at New Willey, and one at Snedshill, and two engines for Cadiz in Spain are featured here providing important evidence on the role of this type of engine, particularly in the emergent iron industry).
  • Pumping engines (Included are the drawings of the first engine at Soho dating from 1774, details on the engine for Bloomfield Colliery near Tipton, the Bedworth Engine at Hawkesbury Colliery and Coleville’s Engine at Torryburn in Fifeshire, near Dunfermline. These provide good examples of early engines. Also featured are plans for engines to help with drainage schemes in the Netherlands, an order for the King of Naples and one for a French colliery near Nantes. There are lots of drawings for collieries and
    iron works throughout England and Scotland, such as Byker, Gateshead Park, Walker and Werneth Collieries, Ketley Iron Furnace, Bradley, Holmes and Coalbrookdale Iron Works).
  • Engines erected on the Cornish Mines (Chasewater, Dolcoath, Hallamaning, North Downs, Poldice, Polgooth, Retallack, Tin-Tang, Trevaskus, Wheal Chance, Wheal fortune, Wheal Union and Wheal Virgin).
Pumping Engine

Digital Guide
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