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British Industrial History

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Georgina Elizabeth Kermode

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Georgina Elizabeth Kermode (c1868-1923) nee Georgina Elizabeth Fawns

1885 Married in Victoria, Australia, to Robert Crellin Kermode (1847–1927)

1923 September 5th. Died.

1923 Obituary [1]

Mrs. GEORGINA ELIZABETH KERMODE, of Moria Vale, Ross, Tasmania, and 45 Carlisle Place, London, S.W. 1, who enjoyed the distinction of being the first lady member of the Institute of Metals - being elected on December 21, 1916 - passed away on September 5, 1923.

The association of lady members with the Institute is, in most cases, first due to research on academia work. In the case of Mrs. Kermode, interest lay rather along the path of the industrial phase of metallurgy.

Having lived for some time in Tasmania, a land of rich metallurgical promise, she became impressed with its great possibilities. At first its many ores were sought mainly for their copper contents. In due time complex zinc-lead ores were met with, and it became obvious to Mrs. Kermode that the future of Tasmania's metallurgy must lie in the solution of the problem of economically treating such ores. Tasmania also abounded in water-power, which is now a matter of State development. It was, therefore, to the treatment of these ores that Mrs. Kermode became closely drawn, and she at once foresaw the possibilities of electrolytic treatment.

She therefore came over to England to obtain first-hand knowledge of the problem, and worked zealously for the establishment of an electrolytic zinc industry to treat the complex Tasmanian ores. With boundless energy, strong conviction, and illimitable resourcefulness, Mrs. Kermode sought to develop these zinc-lead ores on the most modern electrolytic lines, and the present position of the electrolytic zinc industry leaves no room for doubt that this ideal will soon be realized.

Latterly, unfortunately, Mrs. Kermode's health gave way, and she was unable to withstand the strain of several successive operations. With the passing of Mrs. Kermode the Institute loses its first lady member, and a frequent attendant at its meetings.— S. F.

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