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British Industrial History

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Benjamin Alfred Raworth

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Benjamin Alfred Raworth (1849-1919)


1919 Obituary [1]

BENJAMIN ALFRED RAWORTH was born at Chesterfield on 1st June 1849.

He was educated at Chesterfield Grammar School and at Owens College, Manchester.

His apprenticeship, which preceded his going to Owens College, was served at the works of Mr. Edward Hayes, of Stony Stratford.

After taking his course of studies at Owens College he went for a further training of three years at the works of Messrs. Wren and Hopkinson, Manchester, and while there he secured a Whitworth Exhibition in 1868, and a Whitworth Scholarship in 1871.

In the same year he became a private assistant and draughtsman to Sir Joseph Whitworth, and held this position until the following October when he became draughtsman and assistant engineer at the works of Messrs. Siemens Brothers at Woolwich. In 1874 he left this firm to join his brother, the late Mr. J. S. Raworth, at Manchester in the development of some cotton-spinning machinery, and during this period he brought out, in conjunction with his brother, two inventions, one for winding yarns and the other for looms.

He returned to London in 1880 and joined the staff of the late Sir (then Mr.) W. Lloyd Wise as chief technical assistant, his work comprising the preparation of specifications for patents, drafting cases for the opinion of counsel, etc. During this time he also prepared the abstracts of electrical patents for the late Mr. Dredge's book on "Electrical Illumination," and the abstracts of patents which appeared weekly in Engineering. It was this work which led to his joining the staff of Engineering in 1882. Occupying at first a junior position he rose by degrees until, on the death of Mr. Dredge in 1906, he was appointed joint editor with Dr. William H. Maw (Past-President).

In addition to his editorial work he wrote a number of articles during 1901-1904 in Traction and Transmission, a monthly supplement to Engineering.

His death took place, after a long and severe illness, on 30th September 1919, at the age of seventy.

He was elected a Member of this Institution in 1906; he was also a member of the Iron and Steel Institute and of the Institute of Metals.


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