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Frederick Benbow Hebbert

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Frederick Benbow Hebbert (1854-1905)

1906 Obituary [1]

FREDERICK BENBOW HEBBERT, born on the 10th November, 1854, was educated at Wellington College and received his scientific training at the Royal Indian Engineering College, Coopers Hill.

In 1874 he joined the Public Works Department of India and was employed as an assistant engineer on the Wardha Valley Railway and Burma Railways, and on the Wien Gunga Bridge, Chhatisgarh State Railway.

In 1882 he was placed in charge of a division of the Simla Imperial Circle, and having been promoted to the rank of Executive Engineer, he took part, under Mr. H. Irwin, C.I.E., in the construction of large buildings for the Government of India and also of Simla Town Hall. With the completion of the Simla buildings, Mr. Hebbert’s actual constructional work came to an end.

His later career was devoted to the administrative work for which his abilities best suited him, and in which he made his mark as an exceptionally able, conscientious, and energetic oficial.

In 1887 he was appointed Deputy Consulting Engineer for Railways, at Lucknow, and thereafter he held in succession the posts of Under Secretary for Railways, Bengal; Assistant Secretary and Deputy Director-General of Railways to the Government of India; Manager of the Burma State Railway, and Agent for the Burma Railway Company.

Returning to Government service in 1898, he reverted for a time to his former appointment at Lucknow, and was subsequently selected to serve on the Committee appointed to decide the question of gauge in Southern India.

Early in 1904 he was posted to Calcutta as Consulting Engineer to Government for the East Indian, Eastern Bengal and Bengal-Nagpur Railways.

He held this important appointment until February, 1905, when his health broke down and he was ordered home under medical advice. He died at Cannes on the 27th March, 1905, in his fifty-first year.

Wielding a ready and fluent pen, he never hesitated to give clear and forcible expression to the decided views which he held on matters of railway policy and administration; he made no enemies, however, his integrity of character and irresistible charm of manner invariably winning the regard of those with whom he came into contact.

Mr. Hebbert was elected a Member of the Institution on the 4th February, 1890.

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