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British Industrial History

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Robert Cornelius Quin

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Robert Cornelius Quin (1865-1904) of Quin and Speight

Borough Electrical Engineer, Blackpool.

1904 Obituary [1]

ROBERT CORNELIUS QUIN was born in London on 4th February 1865, and was educated at a public elementary school.

From 1882 to 1889 he was a pupil of, and afterwards general assistant to Mr. J. N. Schoolbred, and during this time he was connected with the electric lighting of the construction works of the Forth Bridge, the Calne Village water supply, the Warkworth Harbour Works, &c.

In 1886 he secured his first appointment in the Electricity Department of the Bradford Corporation, and in 1891 was appointed chief assistant of the Brighton Corporation Electricity Works, carrying out extensive alterations and additions.

In 1896 he became electrical and tramway engineer of Blackpool, during which time he was responsible for the conversion of the old conduit line — the first of its kind in the country — to the overhead trolley system.

He was also consulting electrical and tramway engineer to the West Bromwich Town Council.

In January 1904 he was at Tamney, Co. Donegal, with several engineering friends, engaged in surveying a quarry, and while standing on the pier a tidal wave accept in and washed him into the sea. An attempt to rescue him was unsuccessful, but his body was subsequently recovered and brought back to London.

His death took place on 11th January 1904, in his thirty-ninth year.

He became a Member of this Institution in 1899.

1904 Obituary [2]

ROBERT CORNELIUS QUIN, who died on January 11, 1904, was born in London in 1865.

He received his early education at a public elementary school, and commenced his engineering training by entering the office of Mr. J. N. Shoolbred, whom he left to join the staff of the Bradford Corporation Electricity Works, the first Municipal Electricity Supply Station in England.

He resigned his position at Bradford in order to take up a position under the Brighton Corporation, and remained there for about six years.

In 1896 he was appointed Borough Electrical Engineer to the Corporation of Blackpool, and in 1897 this appointment was made to include that of Borough Electrical and Tramway Engineer. During the time Mr. Quin was at Blackpool he converted the conduit system of tramways in operation there to the overhead system, and further carried out numerous and large extensions to the Electricity Works. During the last three years of his tenure of office at Blackpool, he, under an agreement with the Corporation, also acted as Consulting Engineer to various municipalities and private companies, and it was owing to his growing practice in this direction that, in order to devote himself entirely to consulting work, he resigned his appointment in 1902, when, in conjunction with Mr. J. W. Speight, he founded the business of Messrs. Quin & Speight.

At the time of his death, which was the result of a sad accident by drowning off the north coast of Ireland, he was the senior partner of this firm.

He was elected an Associate of this Institution in 1896, and was transferred to the class of Members in. 1898.

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