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British Industrial History

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Arthur Parsey

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Arthur Parsey (c1791- ), Artist and inventor

1818 Married in Whitechapel to Mary Charlotte Morse

1826 Birth of son William Parsey

1845 Listed at 2 Spur Street, London as an artist.[1]

1846 Working model of a railway powered by a compressed air system, patented in 1844, No. 10,352. He exhibited a working model at the office of Parsey's Compressed Air Engine Company, 5, Pall Mall East. It was proposed to have reservoirs of air, compressed to 1000 - 2000 psi, at suitable intervals along the line, for replenishing the two reservoirs which every locomotive was to possess. About 50 or 60 psi on the pistons was to be the working pressure. It was pointed out, however, that the loss of power in compressing air to so high a pressure and using it at such a low one was so great, and the distances that could be run without replenishment, carrying trains of paying weight, so small, that Parsey's system disappeared without being attempted on an everyday working scale.[2]

1851 Listed at 455 Oxford Street.[3]

1851 Listed in 455 New Oxford Street, St. Giles, London: Arthur Parsey (age 60 born Whitechapel), an Artist Portrait Miniatures. With his wife and three children including William Parsey (age 24 born St James), a Mechanical Draughtsman.[4]

In 1960 , Parsey's great-grandson, Arthur H. Parsey, wrote that Arthur Parsey had constructed a full size compressed air locomotive, and that a model resided at his great-grandfather's house in Norbury. In about 1900 the locomotive was offered to Arthur H's father, who accepted, assuming that it was the model. In fact three horse-drawn vans turned up with the actual locomotive! As he was living in an apartment, he had no room, and bribed the van men to take it away and dispose of it as they wished![5]

See Also

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Sources of Information

  1. 1845 Post Office Directory of London and Birmingham with Warwickshire - Part 2
  2. [[The Engineer 1900/02/23], p.208]
  3. 1851 Great Exhibition: Official Catalogue: Class V.: A Parsey
  4. 1851 Census
  5. Model Engineer, 10 March 1950