Grace's Guide

British Industrial History

Grace's Guide is the leading source of historical information on industry and manufacturing in Britain. This web publication contains 148,386 pages of information and 233,851 images on early companies, their products and the people who designed and built them.

James Pearson

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1853. Pearson nine foot driver engine.

James Pearson (1820-1891) was the engineer responsible for the daily operations of Isambard Kingdom Brunel's ill-fated atmospheric equipment on the South Devon Railway. Trains only ran in service from 13 September 1847 to 9 September 1848, but he was retained while the equipment was disposed of.

1820 March 29th. Born at Blackburn

In May 1850 he became the Bristol and Exeter Railway's Locomotive Engineer. Under his control the railway set up new locomotive works at Bristol Temple Meads. These opened in 1851 and built most of the railway's new broad gauge locomotives from 1859.

The most significant locomotives designed by James Pearson were:

  • 1851 Bristol and Exeter Railway 2-2-2T locomotives - 7 small tank locomotives
  • 1854 Bristol and Exeter Railway 4-2-4T locomotives - 8 locomotives with 9 feet wheels
  • 1855 Bristol and Exeter Railway 4-4-0ST locomotives - 26 saddle tank locomotives
  • 1856 Bristol and Exeter Railway 0-6-0 locomotives - 6 goods locomotives
  • 1859 Bristol and Exeter Railway 4-2-4T locomotives - 2 locomotives with 7 feet 6 inch wheels
  • 1868 Bristol and Exeter Railway 4-2-4T locomotives - 4 locomotives with 8 feet 10 inch wheels
  • 1870 Bristol and Exeter Railway 2-4-0 locomotives - 10 passenger locomotives
  • 1874 Bristol and Exeter Railway 2-4-0 locomotives - 3 convertible passenger locomotives

1891 August 30th. Died at Ealing

See Also


Sources of Information

[1] Wikipedia