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John Maitland Grant

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John Maitland Grant (1851-1894)

1894 Obituary [1]

JOHN MAITLAND GRANT, only son of the late Mr. John Grant, for many years Assistant Engineer to the Metropolitan Board of Works, was born on the 24th of July, 1851.

After being educated at Blackheath Proprietary School, he matriculated at the London University in 1869. In the same year he was articled to the late Sir James (then Mr.) Brunlees, and after remaining in the office of that gentleman for some time he was engaged on the construction of the Clifton Extension Railway under G. J. Morrison, and of the Whitehaven Wet Dock under J. Evelyn Williams.

In 1875 and 1876 he made detailed surveys for Barlow, Son and Baker - of the Rushton and Bedford widening and of the Kettering and Manton branch, both on the Midland Railway.

During the latter half of 1876 he was in Ireland, surveying and staking out the Enniskillen and Sligo line,

In June, 1877, Mr. Grant was appointed an Assistant Engineer on the Cape Government Railways.

For the next three years he was engaged on the construction of the line through the Karoo to Kimberley under the Engineer-in-Chief, Mr. W. G. Brounger, and the Chief of Construction, the late Mr. H. J. Pau1ing.

He was then transferred to the Maintenance Department under Mr. John Brown.

In March, 1884, he was promoted to the rank of District Engineer and was entrusted with the maintenance of the way and works over 230 miles of line.

In February, 1886, he was placed on the fixed establishment of the Civil Service of Cape Colony, and in the following June, owing to Government retrenchment, he was retired from the Railway Department on a pension.

For two years Mr. Grant practised privately in the Transvaal, but in September, 1888, he was recalled for service on the survey of new lines, and in the following month he was entrusted with the maintenance of 235 miles of line, and during the next five years had charge of the construction of several stations, bridges and works for water-supply.

Mr. Grant's career was prematurely cut short by a railway accident near Touws River, in which he lost his life on the 24th of April, 1894. A train from Johannesburg to Cape Town, when within the distance signal at Touws River Station, ran into a cattle train on which he was travelling in company with the Engineer-in-Chief, Mr. John Brown. The latter was just able to jump clear of the rails, but Mr. Grant had not time to follow and was killed almost instantaneously.

Mr. Grant was a zealous, energetic and efficient officer, especially in cases of emergency, and his cheerful, genial disposition caused him to be much esteemed and respected throughout the service.

He was elected an Associate Member on the 6th of March, 1888, and was transferred to the class of Member on the 1st of November, 1892.

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