Grace's Guide

British Industrial History

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John Smith (of Coven)

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John Smith of Village Foundry, Coven were general engineers and builders of road traction, portable and winding engines

c.1855 John Fowler invented steam ploughing, which was developed by him in conjunction with John Smith, of Coven, in Staffordshire.[1]

1856/7 Developed an original form of traction engine with the boiler carried independently of the rest of the machinery[2]

1858 Smith built for Fowler an under-drum ploughing engine which type continued in use for 40 years or more.

Later Smith was joined by J. B. Higgs and known as Smith and Higgs

1862 Built steam locomotives for Fletcher, Solly and Urwick

1862 Built a 54 inch thrashing machine with a single fan to suck up grain

1864 Smith and Higgs was dissolved; John Smith, the younger continued the business.

1866 Company founded.

1868 John Smith junior, engineer and patent boiler manufacturer, iron and brass founders, agent to and manufacturers of John Fowler junior's patent stem ploughs[3]

Later built a further 20-30 railway steam locomotives

1874 The firm closed and the contents were auctioned off

1901 Private company. ???

See Also


Sources of Information

  1. The Engineer 1903/06/21
  2. The Engineer 1876/12/08
  3. 1868 Post Office Directory
  • British Steam Locomotive Builders by James W. Lowe. Published in 1975. ISBN 0-905100-816
  • [1] Website detailing the history of the company and illustrating some of its engines