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Edward Roberts (1851-1925)

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Edward Roberts (1851-1925)

1925 Obituary [1]

EDWARD ROBERTS was born in Cornwall on 16th March 1851, and his parents emigrated to Australia in 1855.

His father established a general engineering and foundry business in Bendigo, Victoria, where the subject of this memoir served his apprenticeship from 1865 to 1870, becoming in time works manager.

He attended classes at the Bendigo School of Mines, and in 1873 he matriculated at Melbourne University.

Mr. Roberts went, in 1881, to Dunedin, New Zealand, to become Works Manager there to the firm of Messrs. R. S. Sparrow and Co., and he remained with them for ten years, during which he supervised the construction and erection of the Wingatui Viaduct on the Otago Central Railway, the Cromwell Bridge over the Clutha River, and various important ship repair contracts. In 1892 he established himself in private practice at Dunedin, and was associated with the gold dredging industry from its inception, no less than seventy mining dredges being constructed to his designs, with the introduction of many improvements due to his experience and initiative.

He was also engineer for the Dunedin and Kaikorai Cable Tramway, a noteworthy undertaking, the construction and promotion of which were due largely to his efforts. He was a member of the commission appointed by the New Zealand Government to inquire into the efficiency of the railway workshops, and was also Local Surveyor for the British Association for the Registry of Shipping.

He was a pioneer, too, in the introduction of suction dredging plant as applied to harbour work in New Zealand, and he was for a time a member of the Otago Harbour Board.

His death took place at Dunedin on 18th January 1925, in his seventy-fourth year.

He became a Member of this Institution in 1908.

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